Solid Sail

BV okays Solid Sail system to help cut large cruise ship emissions

French classification society Bureau Veritas (BV) has delivered an approval in principle (AiP) to compatriot shipyard Chantiers de l’Atlantique for its sailing propulsion system, Solid Sail, tailored for the market of large cruise ships.

Chantiers de l’Atlantique
Solid Sail
Courtesy of Chantiers de l’Atlantique

Solid Sail is a 1,200 m² rigid sail made of composite panels assembled together, which was developed specifically for large vessels. The system overcomes the usual size limitations of standard fabric sails, according to BV.

Moreover, the rigidity of the sail panels induces less flapping and therefore increases the estimated life compared to a soft sail.

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BV said it has been involved from the early stage. It conducted an assessment of the Solid Sail’s design and system. This AiP assures the industry that this new technology can be safely used and is ready for the next phase of its development and installation on-board.

Increasing the energy efficiency of cruise ships and lowering their impact on the environment are two of the main objectives of “Ecorizon”, Chantiers de l’Atlantique’s R&D 14-year old program dedicated to ship energy and environmental efficiencies.

This final validation step paves the way for the commercialisation of Solid Sail and its installation on large cruise ships.

The concept of Solid Sail is the first of its kind… The integration on-board a passenger ship of such an innovative solution is only possible thanks to the tremendous collaborative work done with Bureau Veritas on its new rules on Wind Assisted Propulsion,” Frédéric Grizaud, Senior Vice President at Chantiers de l’Atlantique, commented.

“The power of the wind, even if it is not always available, can make a significant contribution to GHG free ship propulsion and ship design,” Laurent Leblanc, Senior Vice President Technical & Operations at Bureau Veritas Marine & Offshore, said.

“We are pleased to deliver this AiP to Chantiers de l’Atlantique, bringing trust in wind propulsion systems and supporting the GHG emission reduction of shipping more generally. That’s how we can help shape a better maritime world. We look forward to seeing the system in operation.”

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