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Berge Bulk launches bulker “Berge Olympus” with retrofitted WindWings 

Firm unveiled the Newcastlemax bulker with four retrofitted BARTech WindWings by Yara Marine Technologies; installation is part of Berge Bulk’s ambition to become carbon neutral by 2025.

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Dry bulk ship owner Berge Bulk on Tuesday (17 October) launched its Newcastlemax bulker, Berge Olympus, with four retrofitted BARTech WindWings by Yara Marine Technologies. 

Berge Bulk said the WindWings installation is part of the firm's ambition to become carbon neutral by 2025 and marks the Berge Olympus as “the world’s most powerful sailing cargo ship.”

With four WindWings installed, each possessing an aerodynamic span of 37.5 metres height and 20 metres width, the Berge Olympus will save six tonnes of fuel per day on an average worldwide route and, in the process, reduce CO2 emissions by approximately 19.5 tonnes per day. 

With these fuel savings and CO2 reductions, Berge Bulk said it is evaluating the potential of installing WindWings on more of its vessels that trade on routes with favourable wind conditions.

In addition to the installation of the WindWings, Berge Olympus has been retrofitted with a shaft generator system. The shaft generator is driven by the main engine to supply electric power to the vessel, thus saving fuel and reducing emissions. With a 1MW capacity, it is sized to eliminate the need to operate auxiliary engines while at sea. This installation concludes a programme that saw multiple vessels retrofitted with the technology.

Berge Bulk has deployed a four-pillar decarbonisation plan that focuses on improving fleet efficiency, leveraging the latest maritime technology, piloting new fuels and investing in carbon capture, Berge Bulk calls it the Marshall Plan.

James Marshall, Chief Executive Officer, Berge Bulk, said: “At Berge Bulk, we are constantly striving to enhance our efficiency and reduce the environmental impact of our existing fleet. From 2008 until today, we have achieved a remarkable 46% reduction in our CO2 emissions per tonne mile, already surpassing the 2030 IMO target for reducing carbon emissions intensity. There’s still so much to do as we accelerate the transition to new fuel in the zero-carbon future. That is why we are proud to partner with BAR Technologies and Yara Marine Technologies to pioneer this WindWing system. The Berge Olympus is a testament to innovation and sustainability.”

John Cooper, Chief Executive Officer, BAR Technologies, said: “We’re immensely proud to be spearheading wind-assisted propulsion through the development of WindWings and through our shared vision with Berge Bulk to launch the world’s most powerful sailing cargo ship. We cannot afford to stand still in developing sustainable solutions for the shipping industry.”

“We believe there is more to be done to harness wind power and push shipping into a greener, and more efficient era. To that end, we are already working on superior hydrodynamics and new types of accommodation blocks with several vessel designers.”

Thomas Koniordos, Chief Executive Officer, Yara Marine Technologies, said: “Wind-assisted propulsion has the potential to offer immediate long-term solutions for shipping’s pathway to Net Zero. We are proud to work with trusted partners such as Berge Bulk and ensure that this technology can be scaled and manufactured to shipping’s high standards, ensuring a robust and resilient supply chain that can meet industry demand.”

Last week, Berge Olympus, a 210,000 DWT dry bulk carrier, powered by wind-assisted propulsion, made its maiden voyage to Singapore while on its way to Brazil from China. 

Related: Port of Singapore welcomes recent visits of wind-powered vessels

Photo credit: Berge Bulk 
Published: 18 October, 2023

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Exclusive: Anemoi lays out financial and environmental benefits of Rotor Sails

UK-based Anemoi shared with Manifold Times financial benefits from reduced bunker fuel consumption when utilising wind-propulsion technology and its long-term environmental benefits.

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Exclusive: Anemoi lays out financial and environmental benefits of Rotor Sails

Anemoi Marine Technologies, a UK-based Rotor Sail developer, wrote an exclusive editorial contribution for Singapore-based bunkering publication Manifold Times exploring the financial benefits from reduced bunker fuel consumption when utilising wind-propulsion technology while also highlighting the long-term environmental benefits of the technology for ship owners: 

As the global shipping industry ramps up decarbonisation efforts, modern cargo vessels are striving for energy efficiency, guided by the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) regulations.  The IMO’s 80th meeting of its Marine Environmental Protection Committee (MEPC 80), which took place in July 2023, spotlighted vessel efficiency, emphasizing a review of energy efficiency design requirements, including the Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) and the Energy Efficiency Existing Ship Index (EEXI).

In pursuit of the IMO's net-zero target of 2050, ship owners are embracing low and zero-carbon technologies. Among these, innovative propulsion options like Flettner Rotors, or Rotor Sails, are gaining traction. These advanced sails, inspired by history but technologically superior, offer auxiliary propulsion to vessels to enable them to maintain their speed but with reduced fuel usage, which can in turn significantly reduce carbon emissions.

Rotor Sails are particularly popular for their retrofitting potential, allowing easy installation on existing vessels in port or dry dock.  With wind power abundant on many trade routes, ship owners are embracing these modern solutions to drive efficiency and cut emissions.

Simplicity

Rotor Sails are genius in their ingenuity. They harness the “Magnus Effect”, rotating within airflow to produce forward thrust perpendicular to the wind. This additional thrust can enhance speed or reduce engine power, dramatically cutting fuel consumption and emissions. Versatile and simple to install, they are suitable for various vessel types. Each sail can be swiftly fitted, even during dry dock or while berthed, making them ideal for rapid retrofits. Moreover, they are portable assets, and can be transferred between ships as required. With their uncomplicated design and swift installation, Rotor Sails offer a rapid and efficient solution for reducing emissions and enhancing efficiency in the maritime sector.

Rotor Sail placement and design on vessels must carefully consider safety and efficiency, ensuring no hindrance to cargo handling. Anemoi Marine Technologies, a leading developer based in the United Kingdom and with a world-class production facility in China, retrofitted three 24-m Rotor Sails on the Kamsarmax bulk carrier TR Lady in June 2023 at Chengxi Shipyard in China. Despite the challenge larger bulkers face in meeting efficiency targets, Rotor Sail technology is ideal due to their ample deck space and predictable wind patterns.

Exclusive: Anemoi lays out financial and environmental benefits of Rotor Sails

TR Lady's trial voyage from China to Australia yielded positive results and annual savings of 10% in fuel consumption and emissions are expected. The sails, which are installed on Anemoi’s transverse rail deployment system, can be moved on the deck when berthed for cargo operations.

Anemoi's Chief Executive Officer, Kim Diederichsen, highlighted the effectiveness and cost efficiency of the technology in reducing emissions: “The installation of Rotor Sails on TR Lady and the results we have seen so far show how effective Rotor Sails are when it comes to reducing the fuel consumption and emissions of a vessel. Rotor Sails are a visible, viable and cost-effective decarbonisation technology.”

Diederichsen went on to say: “Our background equipped us with the knowledge of how to best adapt the technology for complex vessel operations. As a result, we developed a range of Rotor Sails with variable heights and, most uniquely, a range of deployment systems and mounting arrangements. This includes a standard fixed mounting; a folding deployment, which enables the cylinders to be lowered from vertical to enable the vessel to pass under low bridges and avoid impact to cargo loading and unloading; and finally our patented rail system that was used on TR Lady.”

Their technology, adapted for complex vessel operations, includes variable heights and deployment systems like folding and patented rail systems, ensuring adaptability and minimal impact on cargo operations.

Anemoi developed a Fuel Saving Assessment Model (FSAM) to accurately predict fuel and emissions savings. FSAM utilizes Rotor Sail performance, vessel data, route, and wind conditions to simulate historic voyages over five years, ensuring fair and transparent results accounting for additional drag and generator usage.

Forward Thinking

Anemoi already has a number of projects underway with some of the industry’s biggest names, including Vale and Berge Bulk to install Rotor Sails onboard vessels over the coming months and, in February, it received funding from the UK’s Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition to develop a new diameter of Rotor Sail and innovative drive system. Buoyed by its success on bulk carriers, Anemoi has also signed a deal with Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding Group to develop Rotor Sail designs specifically for LNG vessels.

As per the UK’s Clean Maritime Plan, the wind propulsion technology market, including Rotor Sails, is expected to soar to GBP 2 billion (USD 2.5 billion) annually by 2050, a substantial rise from the projected GBP 300 million in the 2020s.

This growth is directly tied to the credibility of Rotor Sails as a decarbonisation technology.  As alternative fuels and other eco-friendly innovations become market-ready, auxiliary wind propulsion methods can be used in tandem to garner even more environmental benefits for the shipping sector.

 

Photo credit: Anemoi Marine Technologies
Published: 16 May, 2024

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Singapore: Seatrium and ABS to develop and commercialise green retrofit products and services

This includes carbon capture, energy efficiency enhancement measures such as air lubrication systems and wind assisted propulsion as well as the integration of low/zero carbon energy sources.

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Seatrium and ABS to develop and commercialise green retrofit products and services

Singapore-headquartered marine engineering firm Seatrium on Wednesday (8 May) announced a three-year Technology Collaboration Agreement (TCA) with ABS (American Bureau of Shipping) at the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) 2024 in Houston, Texas. 

This agreement builds on the successful history of collaboration between the two organisations and aims to accelerate decarbonisation and energy transition in the maritime and offshore sectors.

The TCA with ABS, titled “Accelerating Decarbonisation & Energy Transition”, will focus on four key themes: Decarbonisation, Electrification, New Energies, and Digital Transformation. 

The goal is to develop and commercialise green retrofit products and services, including but not limited to carbon capture, energy efficiency enhancement measures such as air lubrication systems and wind assisted propulsion as well as the integration of low/zero carbon energy sources on offshore assets, electrification, and digital technologies.

Mr Chris Ong, CEO of Seatrium, said, “Seatrium is making significant strides in our visionary approach to engineering a sustainable, low-carbon energy future. This progress is achievable through pivotal industry collaborations with organisations like ABS. We are more than just partners; we are natural allies united by a shared mission and driven by a powerful vision for a sustainable future. ABS and Seatrium have achieved great successes through our previous collaborations, and we are committed to harnessing our distinct strengths and capabilities to push the boundaries and transform the way we approach decarbonisation, energy transition, and digital transformation.”

Dr Christopher J. Wiernicki, Chairman and CEO of ABS, said, “Together, ABS and Seatrium have a remarkable history of pioneering the technological frontiers in the marine and offshore industries. Our shared vision for the future, combined with our twin cultures of innovation and collaboration, mean we are well placed to safely deliver the rapid technological advance our industry needs if we are to meet emissions targets and capitalise on the opportunities offered by decarbonisation and digitalisation.”

 

Photo credit: Seatrium
Published: 9 May 2024

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IWSA invites maritime stakeholders to participate in small vessel wind propulsion survey

IWSA launched a new survey to understand why wind energy use is increasing in small vessel segments and to ascertain what barriers may be holding back further expansion in wind-powered vessels.

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IWSA invites maritime stakeholders to participate in small vessel wind propulsion survey

The International Windship Association (IWSA) on Friday (3 May) announced the launching of a new survey to gather insight from the industry to understand why wind energy use is increasing in small vessel segments and to ascertain what barriers may be holding back further expansion in the number of wind-powered vessels.

IWSA said the number of small vessels sailing using wind as their primary energy source or using wind-assist wind propulsion technology has been increasing steadily in recent years. Over the last few months there has been a further uptick in interest and vessel launchings.

“IWSA’s aim in surveying the industry and disseminating gathered insights from vessel operators’ and cargo owners’ shared experience is to assist harbours/ports in better understanding the sector,” it said in a statement.

“In addition, seafarers interested in engaging in the sector will also be better informed, as will the vessel operators that employ and train them.”

Respondent feedback from small vessel owners operating vessels that use wind energy plus insights from other relevant stakeholders will be published by IWSA in a Small Wind Propulsion Vessel publication.

Gavin Allwright, Secretary General of IWSA, said: “The results of this survey will help inform IWSA’s future work around wind propulsion deployment in the small commercial vessel sector both in developed and lesser developed regions of the world where maritime transport can be absolutely critical.”

“The aim of the resulting Small Wind Propulsion Vessel publication will be to help to facilitate discussions and debate around the issues facing the sector helping to bring together the network further and identify areas that require collective action at an industry, market and policy/regulatory level.”

Stakeholders in any small vessel segments of the industry are invited to participate in the survey. In the survey, a “small vessel” has a fairly broad definition, with vessels under 1000GT included, though this classification issue is one of the questions also under consideration.

The deadline for survey submissions is Friday, 10 May 2024. 

Note: The Small Wind Propulsion Vessel Survey can be found here.

 

Photo credit: International Windship Association
Published: 6 May, 2024

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