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The magic milestone (ENGLISH)


DOF patiently sat through four milestones when Terravera created their unique model. It wasn’t until milestone five things started to get interesting. Now they realize this might be exactly the tool the shipping industry needs. We have spoken to Kai Thompson, who has been working with us on the DOF models who describes their experience through the following transcription of their Terravera Tuesday presentation of recent. (Photo: DOF)

Kai Thompson, DOF:

Their goals

I’ll start with DOF’s sustainability imperative, that is why we are engaged in sustainability and why we are working with Terravera.

A key ESG initiative for DOF is to establish our business as a «Top 5» company within our sector (Marine Contracting Industry). Enabling this, DOF shall seek to work with recognized industry leaders in ESG areas and create strategic partnerships as well as applying best practices to ESG issues.

DOF considers Terravera a strategic partner in this area through the access it provides to academic experts and bespoke modeling services.

Together with Terravera we have decided on these two key focus areas in the coming year. Getting access to experts across academia and other industries as well as using Terravera’s specialized modeling services.

The scopes and SDG’s

Within DOF there are three main areas we are looking at across the life cycle of a vessel.

  1. Newbuild Phase

  2. Operations phase and extension of operational life

  3. End of vessels useful life within DOF

From the moment you build a vessel in a shipyard, the entire life cycle and economic life of the asset becomes a consideration. This boils down to making the most of material value throughout every phase of a vessel life. Another important aspect, that dictates the length of a vessels economical life are its emissions and contribution towards DOFs scope 1 footprint during operational phases. It is becoming increasingly vessels to have low emissions in order to see out its full-time scale in operations. This means DOF has to take more consideration of how we utilize our assets and its capability to evolve or adapt to industry, client or stakeholder needs.. There are a lot of circular economy principles that can be brought into this in terms of utilizing the assets and material inputs of the assets and at the end find needs in the market so that they do not become «stranded assets» which is a big risk to companies like DOF.

Through the whole value chain we commit to SDG number 9, Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure as well as 12, Responsible Consumption and Production. and number 13, Climate Action.

Number 14, «Life below water» represents our main commitment within the Sustainable Development Goals during the use and life cycle of the vessel. SDG 14 encompasses DOFs commitment to be a steward of the environment and minimize impact to marine ecosystems.

DOF Journey with TVF

Our journey with Terravera has been split into six milestones. The first four milestones was very much like a newbuild vessel, when you set up your foundation for the future. We started setting up the parameters of the model, data input, identifying what is feasible. From there, we set up quality checks and controls around scoped in emissions and the 12 subject vessels inputted into TerraLite.

The first part was very much building the model and spending time quality controlling the data inputs.

Milestone 5 and 6 is where it got more interesting. This is when we started to see the usefulness of the model emerge. Within milestone 5, we started to have digital twins of two vessels, utilizing scenario analysis to forecast what would happen if we changed the way we set up the engines, for example. The process of scenario analysis was used to see what happened if we change a transit speed or route and what effect this could mount to in fuel economy and CO2 emissions, for example.

We already had the raw data for the vessels, and we were now able to compare it to different variables by using the Terralight model. Now we are looking at adding even more variables into the model so we can start looking at the effects different sustainability issues within fuel efficiency have across the vessels operational lifespan.

This includes modelling the effect of biofouling has on the hull and its influence on fuel efficiency and ultimately Co2 emissions. We are looking at environmental variables and how biofouling accumulates on the hull and propellors. This might enable us to learn more about in which frequency we should clean them or how other external variables have a knock-on effect on drag co-efficient of vessel structures. We are looking at a profound area for environmental impact in the shipping industry.

These models contribute to decision making processes within DOF, assisting with determining the choice of vessels to use and the use of management controls to optimize efficiency on the basis of CO2 emissions. In many respects CO2 or GHG emissions are not DOFs biggest sustainability concerns, it is choosing the wrong vessel for the project, transiting at the wrong speeds or not correctly optimizing the vessel for fuel efficiency that has the biggest effect on scope 1 emissions. Making the right decisions is key to enabling DOF to reach our carbonization targets. The Terravera model so far has been assisting us with a greater capacity to make considered decisions around fuel efficiency.

Industry perspective and emissions gap

My personal reflection seeing this in a industry perspective is to find where Terravera fits in in the larger perspective. The change in trajectory required to meeting 2050 carbon reduction implies a massive overhaul in the technologies companies like DOF will use. There is currently a technology gap, that unless bridged – I don’t think any company can meet their emission reduction targets. Regulations and stakeholder pressures do not allow us to just wait for these disruptive technologies to emerge before taking action. We must optimize what we have, whilst also keeping an eye on the future. The technology gap and uncertainty created by this void is what is keeping board members up at night. There is a balancing act of a conservative approach of just optimization of existing assets and being a first mover in new technologies. Nevertheless, both play an important role in my opinion.

Optimization of the assets we have cannot be overlooked as a de-carbonization measure.

For companies like DOF this means having quantifiable information to act upon. This enables us to address this uncertainty and make better decisions around what vessel optimization initiatives we adopt and what green technologies we spend our research budgets. This is exactly what terravera is all about. Addressing this uncertainty and enabling companies to meet these targets. Because if we can’t, forecast and backcast where we need to be, we will be stuck in a limbo when it comes to this 50% reduction of uncertainty in action.

Companies like Terravera that can make digital twins, model forwards with different parameters is exactly what our industry needs. Right now there’s a paralysis of inaction in the industry. Everyone is fighting for information that is not really there, to address this emission gap.


Terravera Foundation is proud to be working with DOF and we are looking forward to seek more knowledge through modeling of their vessels.


If you have questions, contact us at info@terravera.world

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