New Publication in Computational and Applied Mathematics

1 minute read


The Weather Navigation project opens the week cellebrating another scientific publication. Our fellow researchers have published the article “Hybrid search method for Zermelo’s navigation problem” in the journal of Computational and Applied Mathematics.

The aim of Weather Navigation is to develop state of the art algorithms to tackle the Zermelo’s navigation problem. In the paper, our researchers present a novel method called “Hybrid Search”, that can be regarded as an extension of the recent Ferraro–Martín de Diego-Sato algorithm to allow for further exploration in search for the global optimum, in situations of complex vector fields where many locally optimal trajectories exist. Our algorithm is designed to work in both Euclidean and spherical spaces and utilizes a heuristic that allows the vessel to move forward while remaining within a predetermined search cone centered around the destination. This approach not only improves efficiency but also includes obstacle avoidance, making it well-suited for real-world applications. We evaluate the performance of the Hybrid Search algorithm on synthetic vector fields and real ocean currents, demonstrating its effectiveness and performance.

Hybrid Search

Zermelo’s navigation problem has a very impactful application in real scenarios: weather routing. This implies using information from ocean current forecasts to choose the best route for a shipping vessel, minimizing its travel time and GHG emissions, while also increasing the security of the journey.

Read the new paper here

This research is supported by:

  • BBVA Foundation via the project “Mathematical optimization for a more efficient, safer and decarbonized maritime transport”.

  • Spanish Agencia Estatal de Investigación under grant TED2021-129455B-I00, “Optimization of maritime routes with real time oceanographic and meteorological data”.