Published on September 26th, 2013 | by Jo Borrás21
Vindskip: The Fuel-Efficient Ship Shaped Like A Sail (Video)
Promising to cut fuel use by 60% and harmful carbon emissions by up to 80%, a Lade AS’ fuel-efficient ship concept could revolutionize the overseas cargo shipping industry and reduce fossil fuel use by millions — if not billions! — of barrels per year.
Lade AS, the Norwegian designers behind the Vindskip concept, have made use of a design concept similar to the “lifting body” in aircraft design, which uses the shape of the main hull to generate positive lift as the engine pushes the aircraft forward. In the Vindskip, the hull is shaped like a giant sail which, according to its designers, generates a forward thrust towards the apparent wind (the “wind” created by the forward progress of a vehicle that’s felt by its passengers). If it works, the Vindskip will easily become the most fuel-efficient ship of its size in the world.
As far as “if it works” goes, the design is solid enough to have already received several international patents, and the company suggests that a computerized navigation system running a number of complex algorithms from GPS and weather satellites could help Vindskip captains to plot the most fuel-efficient shipping courses “on the fly.” That means that this simple technology will, on its own, rival the more expensive fuel and emissions reductions of ships like Nissan’s solar-diesel hybrid car-hauler and Viking’s LNG-engined cruise ships (the same engine, which, it should be noted, will be used by Lade AS).
To get a sense of how big Lade AS’ fuel efficient ship concept really is, check out this CGI rendering …
… and take a few minutes to watch the company’s concept video to see how the concept works. I think you’ll agree: any new tech that can cut the fuel bill by 60% on a gas bill this size deserves attention. Enjoy!