News Release

Researchers collaborate with the shipping industry to cut costs, fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions in shipping

Business Announcement

Abo Akademi University

A common challenge in shipping occurs when ships arrive promptly at their destination, only to find a crowded harbour. Subsequently, they are often required to wait outside the harbour or anchor until port services and a quayside become available.

According to a report from the International Maritime Organization (IMO), it is not uncommon for ships to spend between 5-10% of their time waiting to enter port. Excessive speeds followed by extended waiting times with engines running result in a notable increase in fuel consumption. This is a problem that impacts both the climate and the economy.

Several European universities, ports, shipping companies and technology firms have now joined forces to develop a software system and business models aimed at optimising travel and port calls for both existing and new shipping routes, incorporating land-based services. The MISSION project is funded by the European Commission with a total budget of 7.5 million euros.

The primary goal of the project is to promote transparency and foster cooperation among stakeholders within maritime transport networks. Through coordinated ship scheduling and an optimisation of ship operations and port services, the objective is to achieve a substantial increase in energy efficiency and a 10-20% reduction in fuel consumption, consequently resulting in lowered greenhouse gas emissions.

–  The MISSION system empowers decision-makers to efficiently manage port traffic, encompassing both sea and inland operations through digitalisation and streamlined processes for operations, communication and administrative tasks. This eliminates bottlenecks in the overall maritime supply chain, leading to substantial economic benefits for shipping and environmental advantages for society, according to Magnus Hellström, Professor of Industrial Economics and leader of Åbo Akademi University’s participation in the project.

Åbo Akademi University is spearheading the development of green business models to facilitate the deployment and commercialisation of the system within the project. Henrik Ringbom, Professor of Marine Law at Åbo Akademi University, is leading the legal aspects of the project, which involves exploring opportunities to support and enhance regulatory measures by the authorities.

The project encompasses approximately 30 European universities, shipping companies, technology firms and port companies. MISSION is a Horizon Europe project that spans from January 1, 2024, to June 30, 2027.

Find out more on the project website.

For more information, please contact:

Magnus Hellström, Professor of Industrial Economics, Åbo Akademi University
+358 407 379 980

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