Developing the most energy efficient vessel for the future starts with determining the potential future operational profile and any given restrictions at an early stage. The ideal design solution should consider the main dimensions, hull forms, general arrangements and engine types. To support your decision-making process, complex models that allow the design of the best suitable ship for you are essential.
Optimising energy efficiency during the newbuild concept phase
Two aspects are key when optimising a maritime transport system; the design of the transport system and the design of the ships. Studies indicate that more than half of the energy efficiency savings potential is associated with the transport system. Decisions related to routes, fleet composition, ship capacities and speed highly influence the fuel consumption relative to the transport work carried out. Developing a realistic operating profile true to real-life operation will ensure that the vessel design may be matched to actual needs and running conditions, thus producing a more energy efficient vessel. Operating profiles will vary with the trading route and should thus be carefully fitted to the vessel type under consideration.
Hull lines optimisation
The most effective measures for reducing energy consumption can be taken in the concept phase of the vessel. These are primarily the choice of the main dimensions and the adoption of the general arrangement, the definition of the propulsor and the definition of a suitable operational profile. Further savings can be achieved during the design phase of the ship by implementing an effective and optimised lines design. Holistic approaches combine parametric modelling of the hull form, advanced computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and genetic optimisation strategies. The right decision is strongly driven by the intended operational profile of the vessel and the grade of flexibility allowed.
Optimisation of propulsion and machinery systems design
The fuel savings that can often be made by optimising the operation of engine and machinery systems originate from two main causes; (a) the crew’s traditional way of operating the systems being suboptimal, and (b) the systems installed in older ships are not up-to-date or either tuned for optimal operation or the ship’s current operational profile. In a strategy to improve fuel efficiency for machinery and systems, useful experience can be gained by using the information available from the on-board power management system coupled with advanced modelling and simulation using in-house developed computer tools.