NautoPilot 5000 NX reduces fuel consumption and emissions

Available data reveals fuel savings and positive impact on the CII rating when using Anschütz NautoPilot 5000 NX for ships.

Sea trials have proven that the new Anschütz autopilot NautoPilot 5000 NX can significantly reduce the fuel consumption of ships. This not only has an impact on costs and emissions, but also improves the new Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) rating of the respective ship.

In January of 2023, Anschütz was the first manufacturer to introduce an autopilot that supports the crew onboard ships with four independent functions to steer more efficiently and reduce fuel consumption. Available data reveals that, compared to a classic autopilot, significant fuel savings can be achieved through the functions and settings of the NautoPilot 5000 NX autopilot series.

“Less fuel consumption leads to lower costs, but also to lower emissions,” said Volker Wenzel, Technical Marketing Manager at Anschütz. “In the wake of the climatic change and new or upcoming regulations, reducing emissions is becoming increasingly important for shipowners and ship operators.”

CO2 emissions per cargo-carrying capacity and nautical mile are measured and assessed using the Carbon Intensity Indicator. From 2024 onwards, cargo, cruise and RoPax ships must calculate their CII value based on reported fuel oil consumption data from the previous year. They must then report their fuel oil consumption with a view to inform further International Maritime Organization measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from ships.

The CII can be improved either by an increase of distance travelled, an increase of the vessel’s capacity, or by a reduction of the annual fuel consumption. The latter is the way in which the NautoPilot 5000 NX autopilot effectively helps to improve the CII rating.

“Speed, rudder movements, weather conditions and the characteristics of the ship all affect steering performance,” said Wenzel. “That's why we've developed the world's most comprehensive range of fuel-saving features for the NautoPilot 5000 NX, which alone or in combination optimise rudder movements and minimise fuel consumption.”

Fuel-saving features of NautoPilot 5000 NX include:

  • Heading and Rudder Plot provides an instant overview of steering performance and simplifies adjustment of autopilot settings for minimal rudder activity.
  • Course Control Mode steers the vessel on a course over ground line and automatically compensates for drift deviations. The travelled distance is minimised and smaller rudder angles lead to less speed loss compared to manual operation.
  • Economy Mode offers permanent fuel savings by reducing rudder activity with the push of a button. The autopilot permanently monitors the actual yawing movements of the vessel depending on load and sea conditions. Symmetrical movements as well as movements that cannot be corrected due to the inertial behaviour of the ship are filtered out and not corrected by the autopilot.
  • The Toe Angle Function reduces fuel usage for vessels with dual rudders by optimising steering characteristics via offsetting the rudders from each other.

Besides its efficient fuel-saving features, autopilots from the NautoPilot 5000 NX series include unique algorithms for highly precise steering performance where it is needed. This leads to an excellent steering performance even at low speeds, which is of special importance when navigating narrow sailing areas, islands and archipelagos.

Built on new future-proof hardware, NautoPilot 5000 NX clearly displays all navigational information on a 7-inch graphical touchscreen and supports Ethernet communication that meets IEC 61162-450 standards.