The modern maritime sector is reclaiming its wind energy roots – with a high-tech twist, of course. In the most recent development, the French startup Zéphyr & Borée got certification last week for a new container ship equipped with eight rigid sails designed by Computed Wing Sails.
A rigid wind energy harvester is a large, asymmetrical sail that mimics a glider’s wing. Depending on the wind conditions, it may be folded down to a half-height position for maximum efficiency. Additionally, this stiff sail can be furled, which means that it may be folded into a more compact shape during inclement weather.z
The new sails have obtained preliminary clearance from the world’s premier certifying organization, Bureau Veritas (BV), which has created a new classification system for oceangoing wind propulsion systems.
With the Zéphyr & Borée project, BV had its work cut out for it. The ship is not a demonstration vessel. It is a full-sized, 185-meter (about 607-foot) cargo ship with a capacity of 1,800 TEU, or twenty-foot containers.
That is a fraction of the size of today’s largest cargo ships, which often exceed 20,000 TEU. It is, however, large enough to demonstrate how wind energy may be scaled up to assist in decarbonizing the worldwide marine sector.
Reference- Bureau Veritas (BV) website & PR, Zéphyr & Borée website, Computed Wing Sails Online Newsroom, Clean Technica