CTO (Ship Design and Research Centre) was established in 1 January, 1971 as a state owned company by joining Central Design-Research Office of Shipbuilding Industry and Central Ship Design Office No. 2 as a result of the disposition of Ministry of Heavy Industry. In that case the CTO became as a successor of the earlier established design-construction and research-development divisions that used to be acting for the benefit of the shipbuilding and repairing industry.
The scope of the CTO activity was described by the other disposition of the above-mentioned Ministry in the following way:
The above-mentioned initial assumptions were updated by the disposition of the Ministry of Heavy and Agricultural Machineries dated 23 August 1978. As a result of that disposition the design activity was limited to the conceptual designs, however the research-development activities were extended by the design methods and methods related to the engineering works automation. Moreover the Ministry disposition initiated the coordination of the activities undertaking within the RWPG cooperation. It meant that quality steering, regulations and conventions library, new projects and material coding extended general technology activity for the benefit of the branch.
In years 1971-1985 one can notice two main directions within the CTO activity. They are as follows: subject and functional.
The subject directions included the following areas of concern:
The functional directions included the following areas of concern:
The designing works considered as advanced ones executed by CTO were used by the shipyard design-construction offices, while the research-development activities mainly supported ship designing processes, ship systems and equipment designing. The design works included the various scopes of the pre-acquisition and pre-contractual documentation as well as probe studies and analyses regarding the purposefulness of the new ships introduction into the production process. The additional results of those activities were the programs of research-development activity related to the new systems and ship equipment. The mentioned works resulted in many projects. Some of them were finalized as a new designs or a rational import.
The CTO activity within the area of systems, mechanisms and ship equipment can be divided into: deck equipment systems; power plant systems and mechanisms; electrical and automation systems; prototypes of mechanisms and equipment.
At the end of 1971, CTO became as an owner of new office building located in the centre of Gdańsk and in the following years it possessed new, great constructions such as: laboratory of ship model tests, prototype workshop, fire test laboratory, floating corrosion laboratory and office building in Oliwa. As a result of the above activities, the CTO Model Tests Division that was transformed into the Hydromechanics Division of CTO had the following research equipment in the late 70-ties:
The possessed high-quality research equipment and high-experienced personnel - who quickly obtained the required experience in the difficult area that is predicting the hydrodynamics qualities of new designing ship on the basis of the model tests results - allow the CTO Hydromechanics Division became as the substantial partner for shipyard general naval architects. Moreover, the following circumstances of a great importance have influence on the CTO Hydromechanics Division position related to the shipyard naval architects: membership of International Towing Tanks Conference (ITTC) since 1973 (also in the Advisory Council of ITTC) as well as fast developing international bilateral cooperation. With regard to those periods the following institutes belonged to the CTO partner group: Krylov Institute in Leningrad, Bulgarian Ship Hydrodynamics Centre (BSHC) in Warna, Romanian ICEPRONAV in Gałacz, SVA in Poczdam and Italian CETENA located in Genui. The elaborated methodology and techniques of model tests execution and of the computer systems that are based on numerical ship hydromechanics are substantial for the Division current successes.
Considering the activity for the benefit of the branch, the CTO was involved in the unification of many assortments of ship equipment that are produced in the unified series of types, type dimensions etc. That activity created the conditions for optimal selection of the equipment elements according to the design requirements. In that case the CTO activity was concentrated on new projects as well.
The beginning of 90-ties was very difficult for CTO, i.e. sudden orders decrease from shipbuilding industry, from shipyards in particular along with the employment reduction. Not only the numerous groups of specialists leaving CTO caused the employment reduction. Moreover the CTO was forced to compete with the foreign institutions or enterprises during the first period of new system based on free market. The situation was deepening by the contemporary diversification of the research, measuring and designing services offer that was extended beyond the shipbuilding market. The transformation of CTO into multidivisional state-owned company in 1990 was very helpful in that time. Thanks to that transformation it was possible to put the CTO Research and Development Department under some regulations of the Act regarding the research and development units.
Frankly speaking the 90-ties mean the limitation of the research-development activity but from the other hand mean the establishing of CTO position in the traditional areas of design aiding and ship building such as: ship hydromechanics, ship structure or ship material and corrosion. The late 90-ties represent the reactivation of activities within ship designing that was becoming profitable in the future. Many applied and research projects, projects financed by own funds or those executed within the statutory activity that is partly financed and also essential investments related to the research equipment mainly financed by the CTO own funds show clearly that CTO has strong position as a research and development centre acting for Polish shipbuilding and ship repairing industry in particular during the new economic reality.
The membership in the Committee for Research and Development in European Shipbuilding (COREDES) since autumn 1997 - where CTO represents interests of Polish shipbuilding - opened the way to active participation in the research and development projects carried out within the Framework Programs of Researches, Development and Presentation of European Union.
On the 1st October 2002, according to the decision of the Chairman of the State Committee of Scientific Research, the Research and Development Department of CTO has got the status of the research and development unit. On the 1st April 2004 CTO has been transformed into the joint stock company owned by the Ministry of Treasure. As a result of this transformation the name of the company has been changed to the Centrum Techniki Okrętowej Spółka Akcyjna.
By the way this is a present day and not a history. The subject: CTO today is presented in the entire company homepage.
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