Self-Learning Software Helps “K” Line Realize Big Fuel Savings at Sea
A collaboration between ClassNK, one of the world’s top classification societies, and NAPA, the Finnish naval architecture software powerhouse has led to the development of a tool for shipowners, operators and charterers called ClassNK-NAPA Green, one that has unlocked big savings for “K” Line shipping during full-scale trials last year.
In a press conference in Tokyo last week, NAPA Executive Vice President Esa Henttinen highlights the uniqueness of this software in that it is self-learning and vessel specific to create a dynamic performance model that forecasts fuel consumption, best speed, trim angle, optimum route, and estimated time of arrival to a very high degree of accuracy- upwards of 99.6%.
Last year’s test of the software on an 8,000 TEU “K” Line containership generated fuel savings of 3.9 percent during a single Mediterranean/Europe voyage as analyzed against the captain’s voyage plan. This equates to 16.4 tons of fuel or USD $400,000 savings per vessel per year due to speed, trim and route optimization alone.
ClassNK notes that while trim optimization was restricted on this voyage due to loading conditions, results from a full-scale trim optimization study, conducted during two Indian Ocean crossings aboard the vessel, indicated that trim optimization has the possibility to further save fuel up to 4%.
Oddly enough, for this particular ship they found that a 1.5 meter trim by the bow was most efficient.
ClassNK Executive Vice President, Yasushi Nakamura notes,
“The fuel savings revealed through the “K Line” ClassNK-NAPA GREEN sea trials demonstrate the incredible environmental and economic benefits that ship designers, operators and charterers can achieve with innovative software solutions like ClassNK-NAPA GREEN. After 18 months of development, to have achieved this amount of savings at this stage in the project is an exciting milestone of particular significance to the container sector, which operates at higher speeds and is therefore more sensitive to speed and trim optimization than slower vessels.”
“K” Line is one of many operators realizing greater efficiency in operation through the application of ClassNK-NAPA GREEN, including container owners and operators such as Wan Hai Lines and Shoei Kisen. The Finnish shipping operator Bore is also currently installing the system to its fleet of Ro-Ro vessels, following successful trials onboard the 2,863 lane meter (lm) RoFlex vessels Bore Sea and Bore Song. On these two vessels the system has proven savings between 4 and 6%.”
Building on the success of this collaboration, and indeed the close relationship ClassNK has had with NAPA for many years, NAPA was purchased by ClassNK in a landmark deal announced last month.
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