New policy for assessment and certification of ‘novel’ vessels

If you are planning to build or buy a vessel within one of the vessel types set out in the policy, you should contact AMSA for advice on whether it is considered ‘novel’ and determine the best certification pathway for the vessel.

The policy statement provides clarity to the maritime design, construction, engineering and surveying sectors in relation to the assessment and certification of novel vessels. The policy is also relevant to fleet owners and operators thinking about building or buying new vessels that may fall under the novel vessels categories.

Vessel types considered to be ‘novel include’:

  • autonomous vessels greater than 12 metre in length, or those intending to carry people,
  • vessels with alternative fuel technologies including hydrogen, ammonia, and gas-fuelled engines,
  • vessels with electric propulsion and installed battery power exceeding 30kWh*,
  • submarines or passenger-carrying submersibles,
  • dynamically supported vessels (including fully foil-born and vessels that are partially foil supported),
  • wing-in-ground effect (WIG) vessels

Anyone planning to design, buy or build a vessel in one of these categories should email [email protected] for advice on classification and certification.

* NOTE: AMSA may consider larger battery power installations on application. For example, in circumstances where the system is inherently safe and issued a type approval by a recognised organisation based on applicable and relevant rules and type approval schemes for marine battery systems. Applicants must be able to demonstrate competency in design and installation.

For a copy of the policy and further information visit the AMSA website, email [email protected] or phone 1800 627 484.