A group of Swedish technology entrepreneurs and academics joined their forces to accelerate the research and development of an artificial intelligence-based, semi-autonomous system for planning and executing more energy efficient sea voyages.
Launching the Via Kaizen project, the partners aim to develop the new AI-powered, semi-autonomous system for planning and executing more energy efficient sea voyages since the project commenced in August this year.
Lean Marine’s FuelOpt and Fleet Analytics technology and Molflow’s Slipstream technology claim to enable a higher degree of digitalization and automation in vessel operations. The vast amount of vessel data collected is then fed into Lean Marine’s cloud-based performance management platform Fleet Analytics where it will be shared with Molflow’s vessel modelling system, Slipstream.
The academics’ role sees naval architect researchers at the Chalmers University of Technology working in close collaboration with Lean Marine and Molflow on the development of new methods, models, and algorithms. In the meantime, researchers from social anthropology and human factors at Gothenburg University and Linnaeus University are conducting research on what happens to practices onboard and ashore as the new technology is implemented.
The Swedish Shipowners’ Association is also participating in the project, providing insights and input from the Swedish shipping industry and by contributing to the dissemination of research findings and development information to the Swedish maritime industry, while it is stated that a trio of shipowners and operators are involved in the Via Kaizen project, including chemical/product tanker owner and operator, Rederiet Stenersen and pure car and truck carrier owner and operator, UECC. By offering their vessels for technology and product validations, they will enable on-board testing, and the results will be directly evaluated within the scope of the project.
The project is funded by the Swedish Transport Administration, Trafikverket and is being coordinated by CIT Industriell Energi AB.
Mikael Laurin, CEO of Lean Marine, stated that
We believe this project will contribute considerably to the reduction of emissions both from international and domestic transportation, importantly making Swedish shipping more sustainable and competitive in the long-term.