Robots inspect ship hulls

The objective of the European project BugWright2 is to develop and demonstrate an adaptable autonomous robotic solution for servicing ship outer hulls.

By combining the capabilities of autonomous micro air vehicles and small autonomous underwater vehicles, with teams of magnetic-wheeled crawlers operating directly on the surface of the structure, the inspection and cleaning system will be able to seamlessly merge the acquisition of a global overview of the structure with performing a detailed multi-robot visual and acoustic inspection of the structure, detecting corrosion patches or cleaning the surface as necessary – all of this with minimal user intervention. The detailed information provided will be integrated into a real-time visualization and decision-support user-interface taking advantage of virtual reality technologies.

Although ships are the targeted application, the technology may be adapted to different structures assembled out of metal plates, and in particular to storage tanks, our secondary application domain.

Role of Lakeside Labs

Within the consortium of 21 research and industry partners, Lakeside Labs is responsible to develop and implement concepts from the self-organization domain to real robotic swarm applications.

More specifically, we want to answer the following research questions:

  1. What are the main advantages of swarms in this context?
  2. How we can enrich the multi-robot approach with swarms?
  3. What kind of coverage algorithms can be used?
  4. How to perform inter- and intra-swarm communications?
  5. How to integrate this into a heterogeneous application?


European Horizon 2020, Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), Robotics in Application Areas (ICT-09-2019-2020)

Project Coordination

Prof. Dr. Cédric Pradalier
National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS, France)
Georgia Institute of Technology Lorraine


CNRS, FranceLe Centre national de la recherche scientifique
CETIM, FranceTechnical Centre for the Mechanical Industry
UPORTO, PortugalFaculdade de Engenharia da Universidade do Porto
UIB, SpainUniversitat de les Illes Balears 
INSA, FranceNational Institute of Applied Science
RWTH, GermanyRWTH Aachen University
TRU, GermanyTrier University
UNI-KLU, AustriaUniversitaet Klagenfurt
NTNU, Norway Norwegian University of Science and Technology
WMU, SwedenWorld Maritime University
LAKE, AustriaLakeside Labs GmbH
RBP, FranceRoboplanet
BEYE, NorwayBlueye Robotics AS
RINA, ItalyRegistro Italiano Navale 
GLM, GreeceGlafcos Marine Ltd.
APDL, Portugal Administração dos Portos do Douro, Leixões e Viana do Castelo
AASA, PortugalArsenal do Alfeite
IEIC, France In Extenso Innovation Croissance
DANAOS, CyprusDanaos Shipping Co. Ltd.
SBK, CyprusStarbulk Shipmanagement Co. Ltd.