The Shifts Project for world-class AI

Never heard of distributional shift? If you’re in shipping, you should read our post on what it is and why you need to know!

Put simply – it’s one of the greatest challenges to effectively harnessing data, including the use of artificial intelligence, in every sector – and especially so in shipping. Handling this data phenomenon elegantly is the key to unlocking major efficiency improvements on your ships. 

Over the past five years of research we have become industry leaders in this specialty – allowing us to make an average 8% efficiency improvement per vessel through performance routing powered by AI.

But we know that, together, we can increase these numbers – and that collaborating to share approaches to handling distributional shift can not only make shipping greener, but also help sufferers of Multiple Sclerosis, help accelerate the autonomous car revolution, and help improve the lives of millions.

DeepSea and the Shifts Project

To that end, we have launched The Shifts Project alongside a group of researchers from the Universities of Basel, Cambridge, HES-SO Valais and Lausanne. This is an international collaboration dedicated to studying and improving approaches to the critical topic of distributional shift in high-stakes, real-world settings (such as shipping).

“This exciting collaboration will help increase the real-world impact of data-driven approaches such as DeepSea’s. Importantly, it will also provide a benchmark for shipping companies to understand where the industry is in terms of AI – and the sort of progress they should be expecting from their collaborators.

Konstantinos Kyriakopoulos, DeepSea CEO

Test your (virtual) metal

On that note, the Shifts Project has also launched the Shifts Challenge, an open initiative which encourages AI researchers – industrial and academic – in the shipping domain to test their own models’ capacity to handle real-world shipping challenges. The winners and runners-up will receive awards and – above all – a serious “stamp of approval” from some of the world’s top experts in the field.

More information on the Shifts Challenge can be found on the Shifts website.

Working with AWS

The Shifts Project is powered by AWS, providing a fully scaleable environment for evaluating the submitted models. DeepSea's cloud-based infrastructure is also powered by AWS end-to-end - including platform hosting, data storage, and a complete AI environment.

What is distributional shift, and why does it matter in shipping?

Have you heard of distributional shift? Are you involved in shipping?

If the answers are (no) and (yes), you need to read this!

Unless you happen to be one of the small (but increasing) number of data scientists in the shipping domain, chances are you haven’t heard of this phenomenon. But, in fact, it’s one of the greatest obstacles to using data really effectively – not only in maritime, but across every industry.

Robustness to distributional shift is the difference between AI that works in theory, and AI that works for customers.

Konstantinos Kyriakopoulos, DeepSea CEO

Distributional shift is a pretty big term for a pretty simple thing. And in shipping, it’s critical.

Let’s think about hull fouling. We all know what it is – but consider what this marine growth does to the data that is collected from your ship. The level of fouling affects some vitally-important things, including (1) the resistance of the hull; (2) the power required by the engines; (3) the impact of currents; (4) the fuel consumption; (5) the level of emissions.

To make matters worse, all these things – alongside many other data points – are interrelated in a very complex way. We can think of this as the “DNA” of the ship. With me so far?

To make matters EVEN WORSE – this entire complex web of data is changing over time, as fouling develops, in a largely non-predictable way. We can all agree – this makes understanding the data difficult. 

The same data phenomenon is seen in data sets from diverse sectors throughout the world.

That’s distributional shift! … so what?

Understanding the data shows us how to significantly increase vessel efficiency – through voyage and vessel optimisation – and the best tool in the world to make sense of this data is artificial intelligence. 

However, how a solution provider handles distributional shift can makes the difference between an approach that provides a measurable improvement to your vessels’ fuel consumption, and one that could even have a negative impact.

How a solution provider handles distributional shift can makes the difference between an approach that provides a measurable improvement to your vessels’ fuel consumption, and one that could even have a negative impact.

Antonis Nikitakis, AI Research Director

At DeepSea our pioneering AI research in distributional shift over the past five years powers our Pythia and Cassandra platforms – enabling, today, roughly an 8% average efficiency improvement per vessel.

Every day we have the great pleasure of working with shipping companies that are passionate about adopting new technologies to make their organisations greener, leaner and better connected. However, we also see that there is still a lack of information available to help aspiring companies make decisions about what to adopt, why, and what to expect.

Our technology manifesto

That’s why DeepSea follows a three-step ‘technology manifesto’ with you in mind:

  1. Phase 1: Pioneering research into AI approaches in shipping
  2. Phase 2: Proving the real-world utility of these approaches
  3. Phase 3: Advocating for common and transparent standards throughout the industry 

So now you know why distributional shift is so important! If you want to dig deeper – have a look at our exciting project alongside world-class researchers from the Universities of Basel, Cambridge, HES-SO Valais and Lausanne – The Shifts Project.

Moving The Goalposts With Wallenius Wilhelmsen – read the full case study

A landmark success story in Voyage Optimisation

Wallenius Wilhelmsen is rolling DeepSea’s AI-powered Performance Routing solution out across its entire fleet of 120+ ships.

This decision follows a rigorous trial process. The results were impressive: a 6.9% improvement in vessel efficiency and more than 170,000 tonne predicted reduction in emissions across the fleet.

Read the case study published by Wallenius Wilhelmsen and DeepSea to learn:

  • How Wallenius Wilhelmsen implemented this technology
  • How they built support in their organisation
  • The full results of the process
  • How you can make a similar efficiency improvement across your fleet.

Download the case study here:

The collaboration with DeepSea is going to be important to improve how we operate and use our vessels more efficiently, bring significant emission reductions and help the fleet over the coming years to stay compliant with air emission regulations. ”

Adam Larsson, Senior Manager Energy Efficiency and Performance, Wallenius Wilhelmsen.