Sail Like the Wind
The Frisian Sea, a Dutch cargo ship, made its maiden voyage using two compact wind-assisted propulsion units that can be easily moved into position or stowed. The technology has the potential to improve operating efficiency and environmental performance in the shipping industry.
The 388-foot vessel, owned by Boomsma Shipping, was retrofitted with eConowind’s VentiFoils wind technology as part of a pilot program. Installation was completed during a port call in Harlingen.
The VentiFoils are designed as optimal compact wing profiles, creating superior thrust via boundary layer suction, where ventilators are mounted inside the VentiFoils. The thrust of the propeller can be reduced to maintain the same speed, leading to fuel savings and lower emissions.
"We now expect they will give optimal results on our ship," says co-owner Ton Boomsma. "Once the crew gets some experience, we expect no trouble in handling the systems using our hatch cranes."
The wind technology requires limited installation time and can be used on several vessels. With this system, the units can be positioned just in front of the superstructure during loading.
The project was funded by the Interreg North Sea Europe program, part of the European Regional Development Fund.