Wind is the Free Fuel for Tankers and Bulk Carriers

Source: Nord

Published Apr 22, 2020 6:17 PM by The Maritime Executive

Amplifier, BAR Technologies and Reederei Nord are delighted to announce a major partnership, starting the final phase of maturing and adapting BAR Technologies’ patented WindWings technology.

WindWings combines wind propulsion with route optimisation, which could increase the fuel efficiency of sea-going vessels in excess of 30 percent depending on whether the installation is retrofit or on a newbuild with hull optimization. Initially aimed at bulk carriers and tankers, further variations will be developed for other large ship types.  

The IMO has quite rightly challenged and set the goals for the shipping industry with a significant milestone in 2040 but ultimately arriving at a 50 percent reduction in GHG by 2050. At the end of 2019, Amplifier published the Towards Net-Zero report to show pathways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to zero in the North and Baltic Seas. The report, written by sus.lab at ETH Zurich (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology), identifies wind as a significant and underutilized source of energy in shipping. Together with BAR Technologies, Amplifier and Reederei Nord wish to build on these insights and move more aggressively and ahead of regulation towards bringing new wind assistance technologies on the water.

Christian Oldendorff, founder of Amplifier and co-owner of Reederei Nord, stated, “The whole industry is examining which fuel will ultimately replace marine diesel as the fuel of the future. We remain somewhat paralyzed whilst this important decision is contemplated, and the next generation of powertrains are developed. What is for certain is that fuel will remain a large cost factor in shipping and therefore we should strive for greater optimization and efficiency. Harnessing wind at sea yields great potential to reduce fuel costs and reduce the environmental impact of shipping independent of the type of fuel used now or in the future.”

This partnership utilizes the WindWings already developed by BAR Technologies and hones them further to ensure their power can be best utilized in the harsh environments of heavy marine shipping whilst ensuring the top levels of safety and practicality are always adhered to. John Cooper, chief executive of BAR Technologies, said, “We are enormously grateful to Christian, who has again shown his leadership by helping us bring our technology from the patent office to the real world. We are all looking forward to working with the technical team at Reederei Nord and the management at Amplifier to further optimize our technology for a specific vessel.”

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