New Autopilot Route Control Function Can Save 1.5% Energy


MOL tests onboard the new “ACE” autopilot route control function; Results show about 1.5% energy savings.

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. along with Tokyo Keiki Inc., conducted a performance demonstration test of its autopilot route control function, called ACE, onboard a vessel in service. The results show an energy savings of about 1.5%.

What is ACE?

“Advanced Control for Ecology (ACE)” is MOL’s attempt to incorporate technologies to reduce the environmental impact exerted by the fleet on the sea and enhance the safety and reliability of its transport services.

How does this work?

The ACE estimates disturbance effects such as wind and tide by setting the vessel’s course direction and optimally controls the helm to minimize route deviation and reduce the number of course changes required during a voyage.  By these route control measures ACE achieves significant reductions in fuel consumption compared to a similar vessel with a conventional control system.

What makes the difference?

A reduced possibility of change of route of the ship is said to pave the way for reductions in fuel consumption when compared to the result of a similar vessel utilising the traditional control system. MOL centrally collects big data gathered from vessels in service, with the goal of building a comprehensive vessel operation support network that will improve operating safety, reduce vessels’ environmental impact, and boost overall efficiency.

MOL and Tokyo Keiki obtained an analysis from fleet monitor and have incorporated the same into the vessel, as a part of the big data initiative.

The fleet monitor, engineered by Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding, is a vessel operation monitoring system which is leveraged as an Internet-based ship-to-shore integrated information infrastructure system that shares information of the vessel operation with the offices operating on land.

The MOL Group continually takes a proactive stance in developing and introducing technologies that will reduce environmental impact and improve the safety and reliability of its transport services.


Comparison of the conventional control system (left) and the new route control system using ACE (right)

(*)”Fleet Monitor” is a vessel operation monitoring system developed by Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co., Ltd., as an Internet-based ship-to-shore integrated information infrastructure system that manages ship operation while sharing operation information of vessels in service with offices on land.

Source: MOL


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