North Sea Ro-Ro to Install First Tilting Rotor Sails

Mike Schuler
Total Views: 508
June 29, 2020

An illustration of the tiltable Rotor Sails onboard SEA-CARGO’s SC Connector. Image courtesy Norsepower Oy

Helsinki-based Norsepower will install two tilting Rotor Sails onboard a roll-on/roll-off vessel.

Norsepower is a leading provider of auxiliary wind propulsion systems in the commercial shipping sector. The company’s innovative Rotor Sail is a modernised version of the Flettner rotor, a spinning cylinder that uses the Magnus effect to harness wind power to thrust a ship.

Norsepower has now reached an agreement to install two of its largest Rotor Sails onboard SEA-CARGO’s SC Connector, a 12,251 gross tonne side door Ro-Ro operating in the North Sea. The agreement heralds the installation of the world’s first tilting Rotor Sail, providing a more flexible platform that will allow the vessel to navigate under bridges and power lines that would otherwise be impassable. According to Norsepower, the 35-meter-high and 5-meter-wide Rotor Sails will be able to tilt to an almost horizontal position when required.

Preparations for the retrofit on the SC Connector are currently taking place with the installation scheduled for Q4 2020.

Norsepower has analyzed the routes for the SC Connector and estimates that its technology would be able to achieve a carbon emissions reduction of 25% for this vessel.

An animation of the tilting Rotor Sails is below:

“We are delighted to be working with SEA-CARGO, not only as they are keen to demonstrate their commitment to maximising the propulsive power of wind to reduce emissions, but also for their cooperation and innovation in making tilting Rotor Sails a realisation,” said Tuomas Riski, CEO, Norsepower. “Rotor Sails are particularly well suited to Ro-Ro vessels and working with SEA-CARGO to deliver a tilting Rotor Sail ensures we are providing an adaptable solution which fits with particular vessel requirements, specifically demonstrating vessels with height restrictions to benefit from the Rotor Sail solution.”

“With a growing international focus on reducing CO2 emissions and other gases/particles – the ability to harness wind to generate energy, reduce fuel consumption and emissions is a natural next step for the maritime transport industry. The goal of this project has been to design more environmentally friendly vessels by combining several existing technologies. In good wind conditions, the sailing hybrid vessel will maintain regular service speed by sail alone,” added Ole Sævild, Managing Director at SEA-CARGO.

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