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Waxholmsbolaget Stockholm

Virtual gps stopping zones on the water

Waxholmsbolaget Stockholm

Custom solutions from luminator save fuel and stress on ferries

Luminator passenger information systems can also improve waterborne passenger transport. In Sweden that pleases not only the passenger, but also the operator. Each week they save hundreds of liters of diesel fuel: made possible by a clever display system especially developed for use on public ferry services.

Several times a day, the Delfin X runs from the landing stage Ropsten in Stockholm to the island of Storholmen and back. Passengers are particularly reliant on the correct “Next stop” display for intermediate stops, for no-one on the ferry knows beforehand which of the possible stops will actually be made – not even the captain. He only stops at a landing stage when he sees that passengers are waiting there. But in order to correctly display the next stop, the onboard display must know whether or not the ship has docked.

Luminator has solved this problem with fictitious GPS “stopping zones” on the water between the scheduled stops. If the ship passes through a zone without the display registering a stop, the system will automatically switch to the next stop – plus additional route information, if desired. The captain can use the time gained to save diesel: by reducing speed and arriving punctually at the next station.

In the spring and autumn the exterior displays are controlled by GPS. At night the bright reflection of the bow-mounted destination indicator on the water would distract the captain. To avoid this, it switches off shortly before landing.

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Intelligent “Next stop” display on the water; the ferry only stops when someone is waiting at the landing stage.


A specially developed system that simulates specified zones between the stopping points on the water by means of GPS, thus recognizing whether the ferry calls in or misses out a stop.


Even if the ferry misses out a stop during the journey, the correct stops are displayed, together with other travel information. The slower crossing speed reduces fuel consumption considerably. Switching the bow-mounted destination displays off and on prevents unnecessary disturbance to the captain due to glare.

“A crucial factor for the success of the project was the close cooperation with the ferry captains. They were available virtually around the clock, and we were able to accompany them on board for many hours and days during scheduled ferry operations. This gave us a good insight and supplied many answers, without which it would not have been possible to implement the passenger information solution so effectively.”

Jan Rönnerhall, Projektleitung, Luminator

Project facts




Waxholmsbolaget AB


Stockholm, Sweden


Special solution with GPS control for Outdoor and indoor displays

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