Anemoi, Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding join forces on LNG carrier rotor sail designs
UK-based wind propulsion company Anemoi Marine Technologies has entered into a joint design cooperation deal with Chinese shipbuilder Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding Group for the design of rotor sails onboard two LNG carrier newbuildings.
The deal was signed on 26 October between Nick Contopoulos, Chief Operating Officer of Anemoi, and Wang Jiaying, Director of Research and Design Department from Hudong-Zhonghua, at DongHua Technology Building.
As part of the agreement, Anemoi will assess the feasibility and design of rotor sails for installation on LNG carriers and develop specification requirements and designs that can be used for future installation projects in order to meet current and future environmental targets.
In addition, this project is hoped to boost the confidence of rotor sail technology for gas carrier owners and enable the smooth introduction of a new generation of efficient and environmentally friendly LNG carrier design.
“We are pleased to be working closely with Hundong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding Group to develop practical designs and specifications for Rotor Sails onboard LNG carriers,” said Contopoulos.
“With more stringent requirements related to emissions from shipping coming into force, combined with a pressure to protect the environment, ship owners are seeking practical technology that can be easily installed onboard vessels to improve their energy efficiency. Anemoi has been developing industry leading wind propulsion technology for years and this new venture is the next step in rotor sails becoming a critical component of shipping’s decarbonization journey.”
The company described rotor sails as ‘ideal’ solutions for modern LNG carriers due to the large amount of available deck space and limited impact on cargo operations.
As disclosed, Anemoi is experiencing an increase in the demand for rotor sails as ship owners look to make significant fuel and emission savings from their vessels by harnessing renewable wind power during voyages.
Rotor sails, also known as ‘Flettner Rotors’, are vertical cylinders that, when driven to rotate, harness the power of the wind to provide additional forward thrust. The mechanical sails capitalize on the aerodynamic phenomenon known as the Magnus Effect.
A couple of months ago, TR Lady, a bulk carrier owned by TR Lady Shipping, a portfolio company of Tufton Investment Management, and employed on a time charter with Cargill, completed its first voyage with Anemoi’s rotor sails from China to Australia. The vessel was retrofitted with three 5×24m rotor sails.
As informed, initial performance results are positive suggesting that TR Lady can see average annual fuel and emissions savings ‘exceeding the original expectations.’ Specifically, the retrofit project is expected to result in 10% estimated fuel savings and emission reduction per annum.
The performance of the rotor sails will continue to be monitored over the coming months.
Anemoi has also won funding from the UK Research and Innovation’s Horizon Europe Guarantee fund as part of its involvement in the Optiwise EU project.
The Optiwise project aims to maximize the results of vessels using wind propulsion technologies, such as rotor sails. Anemoi is working with a global consortium of industry experts to realize this project.
The project will involve 3 demo cases of wind propulsion concepts, as well as a general design and architecture proposal and a novel energy management system linked to voyage optimization for wind-supported vessels.
Anemoi said earlier that it was on track to have a production capacity to install up to 50 rotor sails a year by the end of 2023 due to growing demand for the technology.