UK's University of Southampton to design the modern world’s first 100% fossil fuel-free sailing cargo ships
Developments are underway at the University of Southampton to design the modern world’s first 100% fossil fuel free sailing cargo ships, in a project which aims to provide efficient and affordable low-carbon shipping in the face of rising fossil fuel prices and the global challenge of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The project combines proven technology and a state of the art dyna-rig sail propulsion system with an off the shelf Rolls-Royce engine powered by waste derived liquid biomethane (liquid gas).
The ships are being developed by B9 Shipping, part of the B9 Energy group of companies, which has started work on a full-scale demonstration vessel validating the engineering and economic assumptions of the initial vessel design.
The fundamental testing programme is being conducted at the University of Southampton’s Wolfson Unit for Marine Technology and Industrial Aerodynamics (WUMTIA), which has provided marine technology and industrial aerodynamics expertise for over 40 years to a world-wide customer base.
The testing programme, which begins in June, will undertake tow tank and wind tunnel research to identify a basic hull design and how it interacts with the dyna-rig system. It will examine various options in the performance parameters of a B9 Ship in scale model, calibrating the thrust from the sailing rig with various hull shapes to secure optimum performance efficiencies in a wide range of meteorological and sea conditions, whilst delivering against the essential commercial (loading and discharge; port constraints) aspects.