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Improved performance of merchant ships

Optimal speed of

merchant ships

It is estimated that maritime transport accounts for 70-80% of all freight transported worldwide. Although shipping is the most efficient mode of transportation in terms of costs and greenhouse gas emissions, moving products and goods remains expensive. It should also be noted that 50-60% of transportation costs are related to fuel consumption. As fuel consumption is directly linked to vessel speed, it plays a key role in controlling the operating costs of a vessel.

Use of

tidal currents


With the issue of sustainable development which until recently was non-existent, it is becoming urgent to review practices and ways of doing things in river transport. One of these practices, which over the years has been put aside, consists of adjusting the speed of ships in order to take advantage of tidal currents.

In this context and taking into account all the factors involved, we have undertaken the exercise of reviewing this practice. First of all, a collection of data on the transit times of trips made in the Escoumins sector in Trois-Rivières was completed. Subsequently, the effect of tidal currents on the progress of ships was modeled to verify the profitability of the use of tidal waves by merchant ships. The positive results of this analysis allowed the development of decision support software allowing, based on all inputs, to optimize the transit of ships on the St. Lawrence and reduce their atmospheric emissions. .

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