Factor analysis of icebreaker assistance operation for ice-going ships in the Baltic Sea

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientificpeer-review

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Abstract

Merchant vessels navigating the Baltic Sea in winter often require assistance from icebreakers to create safe pathways and improve navigational efficiency. Given icebreaker resources are limited, assistance decision is important. The requirement for assistance depends on multiple factors, including ice conditions, weather, and ship characteristics. In this paper, we explore how data-driven techniques can enhance the current understanding of factors influencing the decision-making of icebreaker assistance. Firstly, the paper identifies multiple factors from previous winter navigation operations research. Then different data sources containing traffic data, environmental conditions, and ship characteristics are explored to find data about the identified factors. Finally, an integrated database containing these factors is established. Using a multi-step clustering method, data points in the database are classified as either assistance or independent navigation. Preliminary statistical analysis of the factors is performed to understand how they vary between independent navigation and assistance cases. Results show that weather and ship factors do not significantly vary compared to ice factors. Among the ice factors, ridge ice thickness and level ice concentration vary the most between independent navigation and assistance. These findings are aligned well with empirical knowledge and previous studies. The database and the empirical findings in this paper can provide insights for quantifying factor effects on the decision-making of icebreaker assistance and support the intelligent decision-support system for winter navigation.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the International Conference on Port and Ocean Engineering under Arctic Conditions, POAC
PublisherInternational Conference on Port and Ocean Engineering under Arctic Conditions (POAC)
Number of pages10
Volume2023-June
Publication statusPublished - 2023
MoE publication typeA4 Conference publication
EventInternational Conference on Port and Ocean Engineering under Arctic Conditions - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 12 Jun 202316 Jun 2023
Conference number: 27

Publication series

NameProceedings : International Conference on Port and Ocean Engineering under Arctic Conditions
PublisherInternational Conference on Port and Ocean Engineering under Arctic Conditions
ISSN (Print)0376-6756
ISSN (Electronic)2077-7841

Conference

ConferenceInternational Conference on Port and Ocean Engineering under Arctic Conditions
Abbreviated titlePOAC
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
CityGlasgow
Period12/06/202316/06/2023

Keywords

  • Baltic Sea
  • Factor analysis
  • ice-covered waters
  • Icebreaker assistance
  • Merchant vessels
  • Statistical analysis

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