Use cases for Ship-to-ship transfers (STS) information


We know it is possible to analyze vessel position data obtained through AIS (or other means) to deduce interactions between the vessels. An example to this would be bunkering (vessel - tanker barge interaction). My question is:

What are commercial use cases for such STS operations? Which maritime players would be interested in STS information?

Thank you.

I believe some commercial STS use cases are:

  1. Shipping Companies and Ship Owners: Monitor and optimize vessel operations.
  2. Port Authorities: Manage port traffic and safety compliance.
  3. Tanker Operators: Track bunkering and fuel supply.
  4. Bunker Suppliers: Optimize supply chain and fuel delivery.
  5. Marine Insurance Companies: Assess risk profiles and premiums.
  6. Commodity Traders: Monitor cargo transfers and logistics.
  7. Regulatory Authorities: Enforce safety and environmental compliance.
  8. Shipping Analysts and Consultants: Conduct market research and analysis.
  9. Environmental Organizations: Monitor vessel activities in sensitive areas.

Dear Clifton,

Thank you very much for the comprehensive list. I was only familiar with bunkering operations analysis and regulatory authorities that would like to monitor illegal trade activities.


@aydin-mammadov it’s great to see your interest in bunkering operations analysis and monitoring illegal trade activities. Bunkering analysis using STS information can provide insights into fuel consumption, optimize fuel procurement, and ensure efficient supply chain management for both vessel operators and bunker suppliers.

When it comes to monitoring illegal trade activities, STS information plays a crucial role. Regulatory authorities rely on this data to track vessel interactions, identify suspicious activities, and enforce regulations to combat illicit trades.

Additionally, it’s worth noting that STS operations extend beyond bunkering. They can involve cargo transfers, offshore operations, ship-to-ship transfers for various commodities, and even passenger transfers in certain scenarios. The commercial use cases mentioned earlier can be further explored based on these specific types of STS operations.