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About us

The Research, Development & Innovation department of Damen helps the company to become the most sustainable and digitally connected shipyard in the world. We give support to the business in the development of an innovative product portfolio and offer pro-active advice with the aim of further improving the quality and performance of the Damen products and services.

The RD&I department is divided into Research, Development, and Enabling Technologies branches. There are six research teams, and you as a student will be working in automation team. Here, we develop the technical knowledge and tools that are needed by the development teams to provide consultancy and expert advice to the business in their commercial project work.

Damen invests substantially in its own internal R&D projects. Moreover, we are also very active in collaborative R&D projects with industry partners, as well as academia and knowledge institutes, both nationally and internationally.

The role

As a student working for the automation research team, you will work on novel technologies related to autonomous shipping. This includes both full autonomy and captain support systems, which are steppingstones towards full autonomy. Autonomous shipping is a relatively broad knowledge area, including topics such as vessel dynamics and control, sensing and sensor fusion, collision avoidance, remote command and control, simulations, and development of modular hardware and software to make it all work together. Depending on your background we will together choose the best topic for you to work on. We can accommodate both internships and graduation projects and have roles for both BSc and MSc students. Note that we do hire for a minimum of 6 months.

Key accountabilities

You will be responsible for answering a specific research question (e.g., what sensors to use for autodocking), or for the development of a tool for RD&I (e.g., set up an autonomy simulator in ROS). You may perform (Matlab) simulations, or work with our full-mission bridge simulator, or our model boats in a water basin, or our full-size test vessel, depending on the specific assignment. You will have one of our researchers as your daily supervisor, who will make sure the executed work fits Damen’s expectations.

Skills & experience

At least several skills/experiences from the following list are required to be considered: • BSc/MSc engineering student with a strong background in a topic from the following list: control, robotics, mechatronics, (embedded) software.
• Proficient in simulation skills (e.g., MATLAB/Simulink, python etc) and/or other low-level language skills (I.e., C, C++ etc)
• Experience with network interfacing (e.g., hardwired IOs, ethernet, Modbus etc) and/or standardized protocols (I.e., NMEA, etc)
• Knowledge areas are mainly...
• Perception: Sensing the environment
• Awareness: Assessing the relevance of sensed data to your situation and defining a safe path
• Control: Control strategy to optimally travel the chosen path
• Good command of English, especially in writing.

What we offer

• An internship/ graduation fee and travel allowance will be paid for the duration of the assignment.
• A pleasant and dynamic, international work environment with informal atmosphere
• Mentoring at academic level will be available throughout the internship.


Are you ready to sail into your new adventure at Damen? Don’t hesitate, send us your motivation letter and resume here.