SYNERGETICS – Synergies for Green Transformation of Inland and Coastal Shipping

Inland and coastal shipping face great challenges with respect to a significant reduction of greenhouse-gas and air-pollutant emissions resulting from the requirements stipulated in the European Green Deal and the Taxonomy Regulation as well as the fact that improved environmental performance has become a feature of ever-increasing importance to the sector in order to remain competitive. SYNERGETICS is a Horizon Europe Innovation Action, a particularly application-oriented collaborative project looking at ways to reduce emissions in inland and coastal shipping through retrofit solutions.


LIFE Boat 4 Sturgeon

The overall objective of this LIFE project is to help save the four remaining Danube sturgeon species from extinction: the Sterlet, the Waxdick, the Sternhausen and the Hausen.


Integrated River Engineering Project on the Danube East of Vienna – Catalogue of Measures

On the free-flowing Danube east of Vienna, hydraulic engineering measures are being implemented to stabilise the falling water levels, preserve unique habitats in the Danube floodplains and align the waterway infrastructure with the requirements of safe and economic Danube navigation. In order to achieve these goals, maintenance activities are carried out on an ongoing basis and hydraulic engineering optimisation projects are implemented.

Further projects

  • The project's objective is the establishment of an approx. 700 metre long system of islands and sidearms in the Danube stretch between the powerplant Abwinden-Asten and the mouth of the river Enns as well as the optimisation of the mouth of the Enns.

  • viadonau participates in several expert committees, in order to actively shape rules and regulations in the field of inland navigation. The aim is the sharing of expertise regarding nautical-technical innovations in inland navigation (with a focus on Danube navigation).

  • After all previously used steel buoys for marking the fairway were replaced by modern PE buoys in 2017, the focus is currently on the remote monitoring of all land- and water-side navigation signs by means of remote monitoring modules.

  • In September 2020, the award of the construction contract for the non-motorised thrust unit "Bojenleger 2" was carried out. Construction started in October; the buoy layer was transferred to Austria in spring 2021. With the "Bojenleger 2", a remote-controlled crane and innovative winches can be used to manipulate floating fairway markers in the best possible way and to service the remote monitoring modules located on these buoys.

  • The outcome of the project was the creation of a model programme for state aid and innovative financial instruments that will be used at national level to design public fleet support programmes that are clearly targeted at the needs of the sector.

  • Since 2012 viadonau runs a system for automated creation of water-level forecasting, which will support decision making in low water situations.

  • Development and future management of a national crew database including all necessary information on licences and additional skills of skippers.

  • The lock revision strategy used so far was re-evaluated and revised. The new lock revision strategy was contractually fixed in August 2018.

  • In this research project, the possibilities of partially automated towpath detection and interpretation as well as classification of damage were examined.

  • The survey of the application possibilities/conditions for the use of alternative forms of propulsion and non-fossil fuels in the inland navigation sector is intended to provide a basis for decision-making for political decision-makers as well as for the responsible authorities (BMK), infrastructure operators and the shipping sector in order to implement further steps towards decarbonisation of the transport sector.