a Virtual and physical ExperimeNtal Towing centre for the design of eneRgy Efficient sea-faring vessels

“Setting our sails through research, collaboration, and innovation”

Within the last decade, the Maltese maritime industry has been experiencing rapid technical development, sustaining compliance with international standards and regulations, whilst concurrently endeavouring to adopt the latest, novel, state-of-the-art engineering techniques to adequately support this vision. Yet, albeit the effort, the maritime industry in Malta has untapped potential, and is seeking knowledge-exchange to enhance its capability in the long-term.

In an effort to establish this capacity, l-Università ta’ Malta is forging ahead with plans to set up experimental and virtual towing facilities, which are deemed fundamental and invaluable for the design of energy efficient sea-faring vessels. Although the infrastructure installation is already underway, the appropriate long-term use of such high-end facilities may solely be secured via expertise exchange and networking opportunities with institutions that have already established a strong track record in the field.

This twinning action will enable the transfer of essential knowledge from two internationally-leading research institutions in the maritime industry, namely the University of Strathclyde (Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom) and the Università degli studi di Genova (Italy) to Malta. Local industrial companies within the expanding local maritime industry, such as Naval Architectural Services Ltd., that are seeking to benefit from this framework are acknowledged as key partners in providing the necessary support and characterisation of real-life maritime requirements. Knowledge transfer will be fuelled through a variety of planned activities:

  • short specialist courses to enhance scientific and technological capacity
    • an e-platform for training
    • short term visits to the partners
    • short term expert visits
    • technician/lab staff visits
  • actions to build tomorrow’s maritime professionals and academic innovators
    • research conferences
    • student exchanges
    • student mentoring and joint supervision
    • secondment in industry
    • winter and summer schools
  • actions to raise the research profile of the UM by forming research networking activities
    • involvement in hydro-testing forums and conferences
    • cooperation for on-going research activities and events


Throughout this three-year EU-funded project, our aim is to induce intensive academic & industrial knowledge-exchange between L-Università ta’ Malta, University of Strathclyde, Università degli studi di Genova, and Naval Architectural Services Ltd. in effort of establishing an information-based framework to aid in developing engineering-related numerical and experimental skills for the maritime industry in Malta.


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and Innovation programme.
Project No. 856887