Stena Line shaping a sustainable future with the use of AI

Swedish ferry company Stena Line has reported a significant reduction in fuel consumption thanks to the use of artificial intelligence (AI).

Courtesy of Stena Line

Through its Voyage Optimisation System, optimization of vessel functions can now be done much more efficiently, while resulting in between 1-5% reduction in fuel consumption, the company said.

Stena Line’s new AI system has been tested on crossings between Gothenburg and the Danish port of Frederikshavn, among others.

As explained, the use of AI helps the company optimize vessel operations by accurately analyzing a number of factors that affect the vessel’s voyage, such as wind, waves and depth during the journey, ensuring correct and energy-efficient power output. This data is collected in real-time and processed through AI-powered algorithms, thus reducing fuel consumption and securing the operational strategy.

“It is clear that the use of AI both optimises our operations and supports our vision of a more sustainable future. It is positive to see how the technology has not only enabled significant progress in our efforts to reduce carbon emissions and streamline work, but also gives our crew more time to manage day-to-day operations,” Michael Ljunge, Digital Engineering Manager at Stena Line, commented.

The developers of the AI system work closely with the ship’s crew, both navigators and captains, to continuously receive feedback and make adjustments. This collaboration has proven to be crucial in improving the AI solutions and ensuring its practicality in operations.

“One of the biggest challenges in implementing AI has been ensuring that everyone on board understands how the system works. We originally named the system ‘AI Captain’, but changed this shortly afterwards to avoid misconceptions that AI would replace human decision-making. Instead, the technology is now presented as an intelligent assistant that supports the captain’s and crew’s decisions, which has helped to integrate the AI system in a more natural way and as a tool that complements human expertise and experience,” Ljunge explained.