Reduced environmental impact of marine transport through speed reduction and wind assisted propulsion
Journal article, 2020

To achieve IMO’s goal of a 50% reduction of GHG emission by 2050 (compared to the 2008 levels), shipping must not only work towards an optimization of each ship and its components but aim for an optimization of the complete marine transport system, including fleet planning, harbour logistics, route planning, speed profiles, weather routing and ship design. ShipCLEAN, a newly developed model, introduces a coupling of a marine transport economics model to a sophisticated ship energy systems model – it provides a leap towards a holistic optimization of marine transport systems. This paper presents how the model is applied to propose a reduction in fuel consumption and environmental impact by speed reduction of a container ship on a Pacific Ocean trade and the implementation of wind assisted propulsion on a MR Tanker on a North Atlantic trade. The main conclusions show that an increase of the fuel price, for example by applying a bunker levy, will lead to considerable, economically motivated speed reductions in liner traffic. The case study sowed possible yearly fuel savings of almost 21 300 t if the fuel price would be increased from 300 to 1000 USD/t. Accordingly, higher fuel prices can motivate the installation of wind assisted propulsion, which potentially saves up to 500 t of fuel per year for the investigated MR Tanker on a transatlantic route.

Energy efficiency

Marine Transport

Energy systems modelling

Wind Assisted Propulsion

Speed reduction


Fabian Tillig

Chalmers, Mechanics and Maritime Sciences, Marine Technology

Jonas Ringsberg

Chalmers, Mechanics and Maritime Sciences, Marine Technology

Harilaos Psaraftis

Technical University of Denmark (DTU)

Thalis Zis

Technical University of Denmark (DTU)

Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment

1361-9209 (ISSN)

Vol. 83 1 1-17 102380

ShipCLEAN - Energy efficient marine transport through optimization of coupled transportation logistics and energy systems analyses

Swedish Energy Agency, 2017-09-01 -- 2019-12-31.

Driving Forces

Sustainable development

Innovation and entrepreneurship

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Subject Categories

Energy Engineering

Computational Mathematics

Economics and Business

Vehicle Engineering

Fluid Mechanics and Acoustics


Basic sciences



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