Seven Stena Line vessels now operate using AI assistance to conserve fuel, and the operator plans for a fleet-wide roll out
Stena Line’s AI assistant Stena Fuel Pilot has been successfully introduced on two more Stena Line vessels, Stena Flavia and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. In total, seven Stena Line vessels now operate with AI assistance, with the aim to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by 5 %.
Stena Fuel Pilot started as a pilot study on Stena Scandinavica on the Gothenburg-Kiel route in 2018 with the task to investigate and explore how artificial intelligence can be used to support captains and crews onboard in saving fuel and reducing CO2 emissions.
The AI assistant combines a number of factors to produce an optimised plan, including its artificial intelligence, human nautical expertise and data sources such as current speed and trajectory, wave height and period, water depth and wind speed and direction as well as a vessel’s design characteristics and route timetable. Stena Line said that it expected its conservative estimate for fuel savings on vessels with the AI is 2% and the potential to save more than 5%.
Seven Stena Line vessels in Scandinavia, Germany, and the Baltic Sea now operate with AI assistance and the company plans for a fleet-wide rollout. The latest two vessels that have introduced the AI assistant onboard are Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, running on the Trelleborg-Rostock route and Stena Flavia, currently operating on Nynäshamn-Ventspils.
"The main drivers behind [work on] the reduction of emissions ... are that we have introduced three new energy-efficient vessels on the Irish Sea," said Stena Line group head of sustainability Erik Lewenhaupt. "We have also introduced renewable shore electricity during port calls in Kiel."
In 2020, Stena Line continued to reduce its total CO2 emissions and it said that it is ten years ahead of the IMO international shipping emissions reduction targets.
The use artificial intelligence onboard is one of the four key areas Stena Line have identified to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 30% by 2030, in order to achieve the target to become completely fossil fuel-free by 2050. The other key areas are electrification of port and vessel operations, increased use of alternative fuels such as methanol and hydrogen as well as modernising the existing fleet and the introduction of new fuel-efficient vessels such as the five E-Flexer vessels being introduced 2020-2022.