News: Maritime UK launches Version 7 of the Industry Code of Practice for Maritime Autonomous Ship Systems.


Maritime UK has launched Version 7 of the Industry Code of Practice for Maritime Autonomous Ship Systems.

The accelerating pace of change in maritime autonomy has required updated guidance for those owning and operating Maritime Autonomous Ship Systems (MASS).

Whilst not a legal text, the Code has been used by manufacturers, service providers, and others as part of their day-to-day work. Many manufacturers have reported clients requiring compliance with the Code as a basis for contractual negotiations.

Version 7 adds updated guidance on a variety of topics including Inland Waterways and Operator Standards.

The Maritime UK Autonomous Systems Regulatory Working Group (MASRWG) published the first Code of Practice to global industry-wide acclaim in November 2017, followed by annual updates since then.

Lloyd’s Register has supported the publication of this version of the Code.

Robin Mortimer, Chair of Maritime UK, said:

 “I am delighted that we continue to produce such well-regarded guidance in this most rapidly growing of domains. For the UK, autonomy is a key driver of future growth opportunities and fuses our expertise across the sector - professional services, cutting-edge innovation and high-quality manufacturing and design. Autonomy is at the heart of key national missions like decarbonisation and the National Shipbuilding Strategy.

"The pace of change is accelerating, and as autonomy changes the way we live and work, this Industry Code of Practice serves as valuable guidance on certification, assurance and safety.”

James Fanshawe, the MASRWG Chair, said:

 “MASS development and operations continue to become an established part of the maritime scene. The Code of Practice provides the ideal focus to enable industry to develop ahead of the anticipated international and national regulatory frameworks. Version 7 of the Code of Practice provides the platform for a variety of important updates with some new and revised guidance.”

Maritime UK is also announcing details of the annual MASRWG Conference, to be held on 16 and 17 January 2024. 

Download the code here.