Controllab - Access Bridge

Motion compensated access bridge

SMST specializes in bridges that compensate for the motions of ships. These bridges allow passengers to safely walk from the ship to a wind turbine and back. Controllab provided a digital twin for this bridge to develop and test the motion control software. A VR representation of the bridge was made to show customers a realistic operation of the machine on their ships.


One of SMST’s challenges was developing a safe control system for the TAB-M that could be reused for the other types of bridges. Controllab designed the algorithms for the bridge’s motion compensation, and provided a simulation model of the bridge to test the complete control system.


Model-based design is a technique that uses simulation models to design an application’s control system. These models can be reused at a later stage to test controller hardware. That’s hardware-in-the-loop simulation! Our role was introducing model-based design to the SMST control department, and providing tooling and training for this novel design method.


A significant part of the mechanical and hydraulic system was analyzed early on in the project, using HIL simulations. We found quite a few errors in the control system. This allowed SMST to develop the TAB in a record-breaking time, with minimal commissioning delays.

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