GL acquires maritime consulting firm and software developer

The maritime consulting and software companies Friendship Consulting GmbH and Friendship Systems GmbH are now members of the Germanischer Lloyd Group. The acquisition of the business operations of Friendship Consulting serves to expand GL’s palette of advisory services for shipping companies, yards and the maritime supply industry. By taking an interest in Friendship Systems, Germanischer Lloyd will be able to offer its maritime and industrial customers a range of additional software programs for optimizing the design process. In view of the looming price hikes for marine fuel and the expected emission limits, it is especially important to explore every possible avenue in reducing the consumption of newbuildings. Due to the great complexity of the relevant systems, mathematic models are playing a key role.

Friendship Systems GmbH supports “computer aided engineering” (CAE) for ship hulls, propellers, turbines, pumps and other units. The company’s software development activities facilitate the parametric design procedures and use a holistic approach involving the systematic testing and assessment of design variations.

The capability of evaluating a large number of design variants increases the range of choice, and hence the chance of identifying the best possible design. Regular software training courses are held by Friendship Systems GmbH at its own training centre in Potsdam.

The engineering and consulting firm Friendship Consulting applies functional shape development and optimization to e.g. cargo ships, in order to reduce the degree of wave formation and the propulsion power required as a result. Thanks to “Engineered Fluid Dynamics”, shipowners are given new possibilities for reducing the consumption levels of newbuildings at no extra cost in their design, construction and operation. Tried and tested in practice, the mathematical models are defined in close cooperation with the customers to meet both target criteria and secondary constraints.

Friendship Consulting transforms the customer-specific operational conditions of a ship into a formalized and automated optimization process. Geometric modelling procedures are coupled with hydrostatic und hydrodynamic analysis, and then used for detailed assessment of a hull design. The design space can be investigated in detail, so that promising hull versions are identified at an early stage. Finally, the ideal customer-specific parameters for the ship design are determined from many thousands of virtual ship variants.

With an optimized hull, substantial savings in fuel can be achieved together with corresponding reductions in the emission of CO2, SO2 und NOx. What is more, the investment costs also drop, because a main engine with less output is needed – although this does not necessarily lengthen the time required for a round trip.

Friendship Consulting has its headquarters in Potsdam (near Berlin) in Germany, from where it attends to national and international clients, predominantly in the sectors of ship construction and yacht building.