Lean Marine to fit smart propulsion automation technology on Neste tanker pair

Press release: Swedish propulsion optimization and ship performance management experts, Lean Marine have signed a contract with the Finnish refiner Neste to install the FuelOpt ‘on top’ propulsion automation system onboard two newbuilding aframax crude oil tankers.

Since introducing FuelOpt to the market in 2013, Lean Marine has transformed vessel propulsion control, with FuelOpt enabling direct fuel savings across hundreds of vessels in the global fleet to-date via the automated and optimized control of vessel speed and fuel consumption.

Once activated from an intuitive panel on the bridge, FuelOpt optimizes a vessel’s propulsion line in real-time based on the commands set for engine power, fuel consumption, speed, or a combination thereof. This enables the automated control of vessel speed and fuel consumption, allowing for the avoidance of potential fuel over-consumption in harsh sea conditions, such as high swells and winds.

The system’s adaptive algorithms take varying conditions, e.g. weather conditions, hull resistance and currents, engine load, and shaft power into account. In this way, FuelOpt ensures maximum power optimization, enabling up to 15% direct fuel savings and emission reductions.

Reaching the highest achievable efficiency on vessels with a controllable pitch propeller is also possible since FuelOpt acts as a dynamic tuning system for propulsion machinery to ensure that the engine and propeller operate at optimal conditions. The system achieves this by controlling the propeller’s pitch and RPM separately to produce the most amount of propeller thrust with the least amount of power. Additionally, the system adds an extra layer of operational safety by avoiding risk of overload on the engine system and propulsion line.

Mikael Laurin, CEO at Lean Marine, says: “Since over 90% of the world’s trade is transported by sea, any change towards greener shipping operations will deliver substantial benefits, both for fuel expenditure reduction and for the planet. Neste is highly committed to reducing GHG emissions, both in shipping and other industries. This makes the collaboration with Neste even more valuable to us.”

Neste has deeply embedded sustainability into their everyday business, delivering renewable and circular solutions, and being committed to achieving carbon neutral production by 2035.

Risto-Juhani Kariranta, Shipping Performance Manager at Neste Corporation, says: “At Neste, our purpose is to create a healthier planet for our children. To achieve this, our ambition on decreasing climate emissions, innovation and collaboration plays an important role. From the ship performance perspective, Neste has been evaluating clean technologies for optimized vessel performance. We believe that Lean Marine’s FuelOpt system will empower our newbuilding tankers with fuel savings and emissions reductions from day one.”

Up until now, FuelOpt has been installed onboard on over 100 tankers, by a range of tanker-owners and operators, including Stenersen, Knutsen, Team Tankers, Utkilen, Ektank, Älvtank, Veritas Tankers and Donsötank.

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