Route and speed optimization for liner ships under emission control policies

Lu Zhen, Zhuang Hu, Ran Yan, Dan Zhuge, Shuaian Wang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


Pollutants such as nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur dioxide (SO2), and particulate matters (PM) generated by shipping industry are increasing in recent years. In order to control the ship emission pollution, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) has established the Emission Control Areas (ECAs). In the fierce competition of the shipping market, liner shipping companies are looking for strategies to maintain their core competencies under the emission control policy. To achieve this goal, this paper first proposes a bi-objective mixed integer linear programming model, aiming to optimize sailing routes and speeds within and outside the ECA while minimizing the total fuel cost and SO2 emissions. Then, a new algorithm is developed to solve the proposed model by combining the two-stage iterative algorithm and fuzzy logic method based on ∊-constraint. Finally, this paper compares and analyzes the navigation plan of a real sailing route considering and not considering the effects of ECA. Some experiments are conducted to analyze the effects of fuel cost, decision makers, and ECA boundaries on the total fuel cost and SO2 emissions. The results indicate that the proposed model and algorithm can contribute to save fuel cost and reduce SO2 emissions under the ECA policy and provide different Pareto optimal solutions. Thus, the effectiveness of the model and the efficiency of the algorithm are validated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)330-345
Number of pages16
JournalTransportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020


  • Bi-objective programming
  • Emission Control Area (ECA)
  • Route optimization
  • Sailing speed optimization.
  • Two-stage iterative algorithm

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Transportation
  • Computer Science Applications


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