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Ship Energy Efficiency Management Requires a Total Solution Approach

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Ship and fleet operating efficiencies are multifaceted and interdependent. As such, efficiency management must involve an integrated solution that extends across the entire operation of the fleet. No single metric can be used to indicate success or failure of improving overall efficiency. Rather, a comparative analysis of multiple metrics is required. Furthermore, to be viable, efficiency management must accommodate operating priorities, goals, and constraints. Technology to save fuel and reduce carbon footprint is only useful if critical mission objectives are also met. Most ships can reduce fuel consumption simply by slowing down, albeit at the expense of increased passage duration. Tactical objectives that require fast transit times or reliable just-in-time arrival may justify the associated increase in fuel consumption. Ship operators fulfilling those objectives must look for ways other than slow steaming to improve energy efficiency, including, for example, deployment optimization, smart voyage planning, and onboard energy management. Other key metrics associated with operating efficiency include health and safety of crew and cargo, ship life cycle costs, and unscheduled time in port. Through strategic application of multiple efficiency management tools, these costs may be maintained or reduced while supporting the operational objectives and constraints of ship, fleet, and operator. All of these aspects of ship and fleet operating efficiency may be quantitatively compared to previous baselines using objective benchmarking methodologies.

Keywords: ship efficiency SEEMP energy emissions

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2013

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  • The Marine Technology Society Journal is the flagship publication of the Marine Technology Society. It publishes the highest caliber, peer-reviewed papers on subjects of interest to the society: marine technology, ocean science, marine policy and education. The Journal is dedicated to publishing timely special issues on emerging ocean community concerns while also showcasing general interest and student-authored works.
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