Oldendorff Carriers

Oldendorff Carriers to look into the potential of fitting rotor sails on bulkers

Oldendorff Carriers has signed a joint development project with Anemoi Marine Technologies, Lloyd’s Register and Shanghai Merchant Ship Design and Research Institute (SDARI) to develop a wind-assisted propulsion solution for dry bulk carriers.

Image by Oldendorff Carriers

The project is being announced as the shipping industry faces growing pressure to decarbonize and come up with energy-efficient solutions and technologies.

“This JDP, together with other ongoing projects in our company, is a testament to our commitment to the development and application of green technologies across our fleet. By partnering with the ship designer (SDARI), manufacturer (Anemoi) and Classification Society (LR), OC seeks to achieve a comprehensive functional application of wind technology that returns environmental and commercial benefits throughout our vessels’ entire life cycle,” Torsten Barenthin, Director Innovation of Oldendorff Carriers, said.

Anemoi, LR and SDARI have already joined forces in the development of a series of energy-efficient vessel designs equipped with rotor sails.

Along with the installation of rotor sails, the vessels could also incorporate new hull forms, new energy management systems, a new powering arrangement and modified operational requirements, LR said commenting on the cooperation.

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The adoption of this fuel-saving technology consists of installing Anemoi’s patented vertical rotors on deck.

These mechanical sails, when driven to rotate, harness the power of the wind to provide additional thrust to vessels, reducing fuel consumption and lowering carbon emissions.

In order to ensure the rotors do not interefere with cargo operations and air draft limitations, the sails are mounted with a folding system that enables them to be lowered from vertical into a horizontal position on deck.

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By fitting vertical rotors on a Newcastlemax bulk carrier of 207,000 tdw, wind propulsion can be tested on long haul voyages.

Oldendorff Carriers said that once the design and study phases have been concluded, the results obtained will determine whether the company will proceed with the installation of the wind rotor technology aboard one of its vessels.

The project is scheduled for completion in 2022.

“We are honoured to see Oldendorff Carriers, an industry leader, acknowledge Anemoi Rotor Sails as a key solution to reducing energy consumption and harmful emissions in the bulk sector. Partnering in this project further demonstrates Oldendorff Carriers’ commitment to sustainable shipping and their support of emerging wind propulsion technology as a route to future environmental compliance and decarbonisation,“ said Nick Contopoulos, Chief Operating Officer, Anemoi Marine Technologies.

“We believe the JDP shows the maritime community OC’ is serious about its efforts to reduce GHG emissions and make shipping sustainable and competitive. We think that using wind assistance for enhancing propulsion is a viable way of helping to decarbonise the industry,” Wang Gang Yi, Chief Engineer of SDARI commented.

The company sees rotor sails technology as a complementary solution suitable for combination with other green developments.

Last year OC also signed an agreement with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Center for Bits & Atoms to investigate disruptive improvements in ship design and propulsion to achieve the IMO 2030/50 goals.