Saving fuel is key to reducing operating expenses in the shipping industry and meeting increasing regulatory requirements. With a new service in the market, you can be on your way to achieving better fuel efficiency in no time. High fuel consumption is often the result of relying on inaccurate ocean current data. It can also be due to extensive biofouling on ship hulls, leading to increased fuel use. DHI Current Sea API allows you to optimise fuel consumption through an ocean current data service. In addition, our smart biofouling service predicts the amount of biofouling on vessel hulls. Both digital services work online 24/7.


The speed of a vessel has a high impact on fuel expenses. Vessel speed logs – an instrument that measures vessel speed through the water – are often not very accurate. The same goes for standard global ocean current models available on the market today.

As a result, shipping companies are unable to accurately ascertain the speed of a vessel, which can help optimise route planning to save fuel and plan accurate arrival times at ports. With currents being a key factor in determining resultant vessel speed over ground, reliable and accurate current data – a gap in the market today – will greatly help in achieving more efficient fuel consumption and improved ETA predictions.

Information on reliable current data in forecast mode can be used to steer ships to take advantage of favorable currents and avoid zones with strong counter currents.

At the same time, extensive marine biofouling on ship hulls increases vessel drag and leads to the need for more fuel. With fuel accounting for up to 50% of marine transportation costs, it is no wonder shipping companies are welcoming ways to predict the extent of biofouling on ship hulls as much as possible.


Introducing DHI Current Sea API, a new subscription-based online service providing high quality current data based on integration of satellite measurements and the best hydrodynamic models in the world. This can help optimise route planning and fuel consumption, leading to reduced operational expenses for your business.

The ocean current data are provided from a large set of accurate regional current models combined with global oceanographic and tidal models integrating satellite altimetry (sea surface height measurements). It delivers hourly information on currents five days back and five days ahead in time globally.

In addition, our DHI Current Sea Biofouling API is a revolutionary smart model that provides accurate estimates of the amount of biofouling on a ship based on its whereabouts in the past. The model is based on hourly positions of the ship and considers a number of factors including ship paint, speed, temperature, salinity, chlorophyll, depth and amount of biofouling already present. With this information, expensive diver inspections and hull cleaning may be postponed or scheduled for an earlier time – saving fuel costs substantially.

Compared to commonly used current data sets, a recent project funded by the European Space Agency has shown that using DHI’s high quality current data can lead to fuel savings of up to 5%.

Accessing the data is easy. Both current data and biofouling data are delivered through an Application Programming Interface (API) – no additional hardware or software installation is necessary.

‘DS Norden uses DHI Current Sea API. After having tried other providers, it is our clear perception that we get current data of very high quality from DHI. The regionally high resolution and the fact that the tidal component of the ocean currents is included are important factors for us. The API concept is used to extract current data at positions along the vessels routes. Since we operate globally and not on predefined routes, the API concept fits our needs perfectly. We are also users of DHI’s Current Sea Biofouling API; the advanced fouling growth models creates values as input to our own decision support systems.’

Peter Sinding, Head of Fuel Efficiency, DS Norden

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