Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

CleanTechnica

Clean Power

Wind Powered Cargo Ship Sails Like a Luxury Yacht

B9 cargo ship uses wind powerA futuristic wind powered cargo ship is in the works, and it sports sails modeled after one of the largest luxury yachts in the world, the Maltese Falcon. If it proves successful, the new B9 cargo ship could usher in a new era of fossil fuel–free technology at a critical time for the shipping industry, which is facing the prospect of soaring greenhouse gas emissions as the global import-export market trends upwards.

Shipping cargo with wind power

The B9 is the brainchild of Ireland-based B9 Shipping, part of the B9 Energy group. The rigid sail design actually predates the Maltese Falcon; called Dyna-rig, the foundational technology dates back to the 1960’s.

The advantages of Dyna-rig over canvas sail are numerous. Aside from durability, the electronically operated system requires no rigging lines or hand operation, and it responds quickly to changing wind conditions.

B9 Shipping notes that the Maltese Falcon has crossed the Atlantic twice and has achieved a top speed of 24.9 knots using a Dyna-rig system.

Sailing on biogas

B9 Shipping also notes that the Maltese Falcon only uses its sails about 61 percent of the time. The yacht’s auxiliary power is provided by biogas, and that’s where the B9 Energy group will come in.

B9 plans to manufacture biogas for the cargo ship primarily from a food waste stream, which will power an “off-the-shelf” Bergen gas engine from Rolls Royce.

 

Next steps to wind-powered cargo ships

The University of Southampton’s Wolfson Unit for Marine Technology and Industrial Aerodynamics will be conducting a detailed series of studies as work on the new ship progresses, including economic feasibility as well as performance studies on various hull shapes.

The final design will also take into account the work flow of the shipping industry — namely, loading and unloading cargo.

However, if B9 wants to produce the world’s first fleet of commercially viable wind powered cargo ships, it better get a move on. Last year a company called Eco Marine Power unveiled a rigid sail design for cargo ships that incorporates solar panels, and just last month the University of Tokyo proposed a design for cargo ships powered with low cost metal sails.

Image: Courtesy of B9 Shipping

Follow me on Twitter: @TinaMCasey

 
Appreciate CleanTechnica’s originality and cleantech news coverage? Consider becoming a CleanTechnica Member, Supporter, Technician, or Ambassador — or a patron on Patreon.
 

Don't want to miss a cleantech story? Sign up for daily news updates from CleanTechnica on email. Or follow us on Google News!
 

Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.
Advertisement
 
Written By

Tina specializes in military and corporate sustainability, advanced technology, emerging materials, biofuels, and water and wastewater issues. Views expressed are her own. Follow her on Twitter @TinaMCasey and Google+.

Comments

#1 most loved electric vehicle, solar energy, and battery news & analysis site in the world.

 

Support our work today!

Power CleanTechnica: $3/Month

Tesla News Solar News EV News Data Reports

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Tesla News

EV Reviews

Home Efficiency

You May Also Like

Boats

The shipping giant K Line has high expectations for wind power and the fuel efficient cargo ship of the future.

Clean Power

Wing-like rigid sails are leaping from the rarified world of yacht racing to the backs of cargo ships.

Boats

Norsepower has big plans to bring wind power back to the shipping industry, with an assist from the Magnus effect to save fuel and...

Boats

Wind power might not be the cure-all for shipping industry emissions, but Airsail is talking an average 20% cut in fuel with just two...

Copyright © 2021 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.