Wind assisted shipping gathers momentum

Netherlands-headquartered C-Job Naval Architects, known for recent innovative including the hybrid CNG-Electric ferry ‘Texelstroom’ and the LNG-powered ‘TSHD Bonny River’ for DEME, is currently putting the finishing touch to the FF8000, a revolutionary Wind Assisted Propulsion design.

The Dutch Switijnk family shipping company has contracted C-Job Naval Architects to develop a Rotor Sail-equipped design to meet their specific loading and sailing profile. The contract follows the substantial media attention for the 4,500 DWT Flettner Freighter (the FF4500) which C-Job Naval Architects developed as part of the European Union Interreg project SAIL.

Taking the project name of FF8000, the design will be for a dry cargo ship with 8,000 ton deadweight. Although based on the existing FF4500 design, the new design will include numerous modifications.

Norsepower, the Finnish company that markets rotorsails (also known as Flettner rotors) is also involved in the initial stages of the innovative ship. The company has performed accurate estimates of the FF8000’s sailing profile based on the positive test results from the existing car carrier MS Estraden. Director Stefan Switijnk says: “Sustainable development is part of our future-proof philosophy as a family business.”

Despite the current low price of oil, Switijnk values the importance of thinking ahead and being innovative. Moreover, the company wants to leave the world in a decent state for the next generation. Unlike the FF4500, alternative fuel options are being examined for the FF8000. Switijnk: “Although still fossil-based, LNG could be a link in the current energy transition to more sustainable energy sources. We are also considering other alternatives such as biofuels.” By selecting Rotor Sails, the family will lead the way in the next phase of the transport industry.

This form of ‘Hybrid Wind Assisted Shipping’ consists of vertical rotating cylinders that convert crosswinds into forward thrust by means of the ‘Magnus effect’.

Source: Maritime Journal