With innovation, progress and discovery at its heart, Oceanology International 2024 (Oi24) is preparing to welcome the world’s largest gathering of ocean professionals to the most powerful and inspirational event in its history in March at London’s ExCeL. The three-day marine science and ocean technology exhibition and conference once again promises to deliver an unparalleled global marketplace, packed event schedule and targeted network opportunities for all those involved in exploring, protecting and sustainably operating in the world’s oceans and waterways.
As the industry’s foremost event, the 2024 edition of Oceanology International and its co-located event OceanICT, powered by ON&T, will provide a platform ‘where missions are made possible,’ according to the event organizers RX Global. It will feature an even stronger emphasis on future technology and transformational solutions, with a focus on a sustainable blue economy.
The spotlight will be on new launches on the exhibitor floor and demonstrations at the live in-water dockside location, with hundreds of exhibitors preparing to introduce products and showcase developments across the fast-paced ocean technology, science and engineering sectors.
Global ocean tech community
Featuring a compelling line-up of industry-leading speakers, the full strategic Oi conference programme will encompass a diverse range of technical sessions and ocean futures-focused content across five conference locations. World-class scientists, thought leaders and innovators in the vanguard of the global ocean tech community will bring insightful and original content.
Among the key contributors to the conference programme is Rick Spinrad, under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) administrator. He is the keynote speaker at the opening plenary of the Ocean Futures Theatre, where thought leaders will discuss meeting future ocean technology needs. Sir David King, Emeritus Professor of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, will speak at the Catch the Next Wave conference – returning for 2024 on the final day with a special edition focusing on the climate and biodiversity crisis.
David Ince, Oceanology International portfolio director, said: “At this pivotal and exciting time for the ocean technology industry, our focus is to provide an event where missions are made possible. Demand for new solutions in the blue tech and energy transition markets is exploding, so we are looking forward to delivering an inspirational Oi event in London with the power to propel the direction, progress and impact of the sector. The influence of Oceanology International is built on the scale, breadth, history and reputation of our event and I am confident that, once again, Oi will be a catalyst for ideas and innovation, with unprecedented access to comprehensive solutions, diverse content and expertise.
“As always, Oi24 provides the one occasion and one location where thousands of ocean professionals, international buyers and end users, suppliers and manufacturers can gather to do business face-to-face. For anyone looking for new solutions for their business or projects, Oi is the place to discover cutting-edge technology to ultimately drive revenues. We are committed to working hard to introduce new event services, partnerships and collaborations to enhance the experience for all participants and to delivering another packed three days of exhibition and conference activity, features, workshops and one-to-one meetings.”
Gathering of all global stakeholder groups
Following its landmark return to the calendar in 2022 after a four-year hiatus due to Covid, Oi24 is perfectly placed to answer the pent-up demand for face-to-face interaction, business, networking and socializing. The event is expected to bring 7,500+ attendees and 450+ exhibitors from 80+ countries and, with exhibitor product development and R&D cycles aligned with Oi’s return to London every two years, 100+ companies are set to conduct product or service launch activities.
Oceanology International is the one occasion connecting all global stakeholder groups in oceanology across blue tech, energy and offshore sectors, delivering the sector’s key forum and networking opportunity. Thousands of oceanology stakeholders, spanning industry, government and academia, from engineers, hydrographers and geotechnicians to energy professionals, oceanographers, site investigators, marine surveyors and many more, will come together across a wide range of sectors, including offshore oil & gas, renewables, defence, maritime security, marine science, ports, aquaculture and subsea.
Oi’s focus in 2024 will reflect the global challenges confronting the industry and influencing the trajectory of technology development across numerous ocean-based sectors. Key themes such as the energy transition, climate change and ocean health, offshore energy, geotechnics, hydrography and ocean science, improved sustainability in offshore operations and the development of ocean tech investment and finance opportunities, plus new applications of autonomous systems and AI and ocean connectivity will feature throughout the exhibition and the varied conference agenda. Visitors will discover the latest technology and innovations in acoustics, autonomous and unmanned vessels, bathymetry, cameras, robotics, navigation and more.
Some of the leading visiting companies for 2024 include Teledyne Marine, Saildrone, Saab Seaeye, Kongsberg Maritime, Exail and many more. The show floor will also accommodate many first-time exhibitors, such as: UWare Robotics, a deep-tech startup specializing in data-driven engineering solutions for coastal environments, who will also participate in the Future Tech Hub; Fizoptika Malta, a manufacturer of the smallest fibre optic gyroscopes (FOGs) and FOG-based inertial measurement units (IMUs); and, at OceanICT, CSignum is the first and only platform to utilize low-frequency electromagnetic fields, harnessing nature’s perfect through-the-surface energy for cable-free data transport between an unprecedented number of devices, in more locations than ever before.
Engaging with information and communication technology experts, the OceanICT area is set to expand further in 2024, showcasing companies such as Seafloor Systems, providing total solutions for the hydrographic survey industry, and Seequent, industry leaders in integrated earth modelling, geodata management and team collaboration software.
The industry’s most influential associations returning to the show to support their members and hold their own events include the Society of Underwater Technology (SUT), the Marine Technology Society (MTS), the Hydrographic Society UK & Ireland (THS:UKI) and the Society of Maritime Industries (SMI).
The international profile is underscored at Oi24, with 10+ international and regional pavilions, promoting more than 100+ SMEs, startups, accelerators and innovation clusters. The Canada Pavilion will have strong representation with a 75-person delegation and 24 companies, with Rhode Island, Business France and the Dutch Pavilion also returning.
As part of continued efforts to enhance the event experience for all participants, Oi24 organizers are introducing new event services and partnerships in 2024, with scheduled launches powered by official launch partner Geo-Matching, plus promotion, PR and demonstration activities. The new collaboration with strategic marketing platform Geo-matching will help to deliver integrated worldwide promotion for the trailblazers introducing today’s game-changing technologies. Among the other services on offer are b2match, which will facilitate easy networking opportunities with brokered meetings.
Oi is renowned as a platform for exclusive launches. Exhibitors introducing new solutions at Oi24 include: Cathx Ocean, combining sensor data, machine vision and machine learning-based automation to deliver information in real time to facilitate earlier decision making with its brand CLARITY; Deepinfar Ocean Technology, a high-tech enterprise specializing in the research and development, manufacturing and sale of a full range of underwater robots and related underwater core components; MacArtney Underwater Technology Group, offering connectivity, data acquisition and launch & recovery systems for marine and offshore, ocean science and naval industries; Neptune Sonar, an underwater transducer technology specialist introducing Zeus Piezoceramics, a new ceramic manufacturing venture providing PZT components; and QYSEA Technology, a high-tech enterprise focused on the R&D, production and sale of underwater robotics, which will be showcasing the FIFISH ROVs in a large water tank.
Future Tech Hub
The Future Tech Hub will highlight the startup and tech accelerators who are building transformative new technological ecosystems. Participating exhibitors include: Abyssens, an engineering office specializing in underwater acoustics; ANB Sensors, developers of revolutionary, calibration-free pH sensors for ocean monitoring; C-Kore Systems, simplifying subsea testing with its new Optical TDR unit; Ictineu Submarins, designers of new-generation submersibles; Robosys Automation, provider of AI-powered maritime autonomy and smart shipping software; Tidewise, developer of robotic systems; and uWare Robotics.
Dockside demonstrations and OceanICT
On the Royal Victoria Dock, the Dockside Demos feature gives visitors the opportunity to experience different vehicle, imaging, sonar and instrumentation technologies live and outdoors, in and on the water. Viewing platforms and micro theatres enable close scrutiny of the technology, while the operators are on hand to provide more information. On the dockside, attendees can join brands such as Teledyne Marine, Blueye Robotics, Ocean Power Technology and Maritime Robotics and see live demos of data streaming from vehicles and vessels in the water.
A co-located event in the main exhibition hall, OceanICT, powered by ON&T, will engage with information and communication technology (ICT) experts and discover how recent breakthroughs are facilitating a smarter, more sustainable ocean through greater connectivity. It will connect AI, communications, satellite, IT and IoT solutions providers with key ocean- and water-based end user sectors from around the world.
Oi24 conference programme
The Oi24 conference programme features three days of Technical Sessions and Ocean Futures-focused content across five conference locations featuring topics including: uncrewed vehicles and vessels; ocean observation and measurement; site investigation; data interpretation, AI & ocean ICT; navigation and positioning; offshore renewable energy; asset integrity and monitoring; and bathymetry. There are also a number of associated events which will encompass a range of keynote speeches, workshops and presentations from attending societies and companies.
Ocean Futures Theatre and Catch the Next Wave
The prominent keynote Ocean Futures Theatre within Oi brings together thought leaders from industry, academia and government to discuss meeting future ocean technology needs in line with market developments and new ocean enterprise strategies. With exclusive content delivered by leading academics, technicians, engineers, CEOs and scientists, it is packed with three days of world-beating technical conferencing, featuring panel discussions and strategic debates on topics including transitioning the ocean economy, sustainable offshore operations, blue tech investment and future talent/careers.
Returning in 2024 for its sixth edition, the Catch the Next Wave conference pairs speakers from within and outside of the ocean community, with the aim of sparking new thinking and ideas across disciplinary boundaries and between sectors. The special edition at Oi24 will focus on the climate and biodiversity crisis. It will take a futuristic look at how key areas of rapidly evolving technology might contribute to innovative solutions at the ocean-climate nexus, helping to achieve net zero and beyond, at the same time as supporting the restoration of the Earth’s essential biodiversity and ecosystem services.
The line-up of industry-leading speakers includes: Sir David King, Emeritus Professor of Chemistry, University of Cambridge; Brad Ack, executive director and chief innovation officer, Ocean Visions; Benj Sykes, vice president, head of environment, consenting and external affairs, Ørsted; Jyotika Virmani, executive director, Schmidt Ocean Institute; and Professor Mike Wooldridge, Department of Computer Science, University of Oxford. The topics under discussion include the energy transition, climate repair, protecting the Earth’s living systems and innovating the ocean economy of the future.
In addition to the Oi conference programme, a broad range of companies, societies and associations are set to hold their own forums, AGMs, events and presentations during the three days.
These include several events organized by the Society of Underwater Technology (SUT), including workshops, a career day and sessions focusing on women and diversity, while the Hydrographic Society UK & Ireland (THS:UKI) will hold its AGM.
There will also be a European Observation Systems Technology Innovation forum and, for the first time, Oi is hosting workshops and panels looking at the lifecycle of an offshore wind project and how different technologies, such as autonomy, will become more sustainable.
Oceanology International exhibition and conference takes place over three days from 12–14 March at London’s ExCeL.