MPA and ST Engineering AirX Collaborate on Wing-in-Ground Trials

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) will collaborate with ST Engineering AirX (AirX), a ST Engineering’s joint venture company with Peluca (formerly known as Wigetworks), in its trials of the AirFish Wing-in-Ground (WIG) craft in Singapore. AirX intends to trial both the single-engine and the dual-engine AirFish 8 prototypes, which can seat up to 8 passengers. Vessels like the WIG craft, which operates just above the sea surface by using ground effect1, are governed by the guidelines from the International Maritime Organization. The WIG craft utilises the same collision avoidance rules as conventional ships.

The collaboration is a step towards realising the potential of such technology in areas such as maritime transportation and logistics services.

Facilitate Sea Trials in Singapore and Certification by Classification Society

MPA will work with AirX to identify an area off Changi, Singapore, for the conduct of the trials. MPA will also ensure that measures are in place so that port operations will not be affected during the trials, including sending out advance notification to vessels and the public to keep clear of the area. The trials, which will contribute to the establishment of an Engineering and Certification Centre of Excellence for WIG in Singapore to further attract professionals into the maritime domain, are expected to commence from the third quarter of 2024 at a frequency of twice monthly. Please refer to Annex for the technical specifications of the baseline AirFish 8.

AirX will also work with the classification society on the process and compliance requirements for an Approval in Principle (AiP). The AiP is a validated third-party technical assessment and a certification milestone for the vehicle’s classification as a maritime vessel before it can commence any commercial operations. The AiP will be awarded by classification society upon assessment of the WIG craft’s compliance with safety, quality, and environmental standards.

During the Singapore Maritime Week (SMW) 2024, AirFish 8 will be on display to the public at the Vessel Showcase, from 13-14 April 2024 at the Marina South Pier; while the two-seater AirFish 3 will be on display at the EXPO@SMW at Suntec City Convention Centre from 16-18 April 2024.

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