La Meridionale - Ferry Girolata

Reliable Power Control made simple

Ship uses 30% less fuel with automated power management system

Ferry transporting passengers and vehicles between Marseille, France, and Corsica gets PMS retrofit with new shore connection. “DEIF was able to rise to the challenge with us,” the shipowner says.

Senior-Expert-Engineer-Didier-Campeggio-checks-the-status-on-a -PM-300Image: DEIF Senior Expert Engineer Didier Campeggio checks the status on a PPM 300 intelligent controller with the ship’s Chief Engineer Nicolas Prebot in the technical room on board La Méridionale’s Girolata. 

The retrofit

When La Méridionale decided its Marseilles-Corsica ferry, Girolata, was overdue for a retrofit of its power management system (PMS), it had some demands for AMM Electricité Marine, the naval electro service contractor.

First, the new PMS must be less manual and more automated, so that it could better manage energy. Second, it had to have a similar look and feel as the old one – efficient and easy to use. Third, it had to incorporate a new shore power connection, so that when the ship was at dock, it was not burning diesel fuel. Lastly, the complete renovation must take place under an extremely tight deadline – namely, under four weeks.

“You can’t stop a ship so easily,” says Christophe Séguinot, Technical Director at La Méridionale. “So we usually take advantage of a maintenance stop, and that has a set duration.” 

The solution

AMM’s Gérard Leynaud says there was no question of whom to call for the PMS equipment. “We have been working with DEIF for a few years. We have developed a close bond and affinity with their technician,” he says, referring to DEIF’s Senior Expert Engineer, Didier Campeggio.

“We called DEIF firstly to get advice about the equipment to choose,” he says. The main solution consisted of DEIF’s PPM 300 intelligent controller platform for power management and generator control. The PPM 300 system would automate power management not only while the Girolata was at sea but also while it was at berth with the shore connection, says Gérard Leynaud.

Once AMM had its design underway, Leynaud called DEIF again. “They checked all the plans, as well as the programming we had started establishing – to check if everything was correct. And our bond continued as we worked together to finalise the project,” he says.


Image: AMM’s Gérard Leynaud says his team has developed a close bond with DEIF Senior Expert Engineer Didier Campeggio, here on board one of the La Méridionale’s ships.

Automated PMS

“DEIF gave us the systems to connect supervision to the ship’s equipment,” says Christophe Séguinot. “Having an automatic power management system allows us all year long to reduce the generators’ working time,” he adds. “The system is able to start or stop a generator on its own, according to the peaks and thresholds of requested power.”

He adds that the additional collaboration between DEIF and another supplier, Schneider, brought another great advantage that is particularly felt by the operators and crew – namely, the “very well-defined operation modes, whether the ship’s at dock, during manoeuvres or at sea,” he says.

“The benefit of DEIF systems allow a ship-owner like us to have access to a very operational system and very adapted to our utilisation with pre-determined modes.”


Image: DEIF’s Didier Campeggio reviews Girolata’s power management system with the ship’s Chief Engineer Nicolas Prebot.

The fuel savings

The PPM 300’s “dock mode” allows La Méridionale to connect its ships to electricity when berthed. “It saves us around 30% on fuel consumption because of the system automation,” Séguinot says. “That’s the equivalent of several thousand cars’ emissions saved at each stopover.”

“It’s a real change. Our crew has access to much more data. We can fine-tune numerous parameters, and it wasn’t possible before.”

Christophe Seguinot |

In addition, he says, the feedback he’s received from the ship’s sailors and officers has been very positive. “It’s a real change,” Séguinot says. “They have access to much more data. We can fine-tune parameters, and this wasn’t possible before.”

He adds: “DEIF was able to rise to the challenge with us.”

AMM’s Gérard Leynaud says, “DEIF’s power management system on ships brings simplicity of use – particularly for mechanical engineers. And it opened a door for us, with the hope to work on other ships with the same principle.”


For the power management system retrofit on board the Girolata, DEIF supplied its PPM 300 intelligent controller platform for power management and generator control.

Related: Tycho Brahe - Ferries of the future save 65% carbon dioxide

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Arash Arvin Golkhosravi, Sales Engineer

+33 (0)4 92 38 47 79 |