Barriers to Trim Optimization

The good application of trim optimization can be affected by the following constraints:

Ship loading: The weight distribution on board must be determined in order to allow trim optimization. Therefore, adequate communication between ship and port is paramount. As stated above, the loading computers may be effectively used for safe loading as well as for setting the optimal trim.

Operational risk challenges: This includes the oversight of bending moments and shear forces when practicing trim optimization. In this respect, it should be noted that not all vessels have real time stability assessors or calculators on-board. Additionally, danger to cargo in particular for those ships with deck cargos, is also another constraint.

Real-time bunker and water transfers on-board: The officers on the watch might have incomplete knowledge of the bunker and water (grey/fresh water) transfers on-board. Therefore, they may not be aware of the effects of such activities on the trim. Again this highlights the importance of shipboard communications between deck department and engine department.

Watch changeover: Sometimes the information regarding ballast operations is not passed on during the watch changeover between the crew (MariEMS 2017).