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Thursday, June 20, 2024

MOL to Install Wind Powered Propulsion Systems on Seven New Vessels

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

May 27, 2024

(Credit: MOL)

(Credit: MOL)

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) and its company MOL Drybulk have announced plans to install wind propulsion systems, including Wind Challenger, on a total of seven newbuilding bulk carriers and multi-purpose vessels.

The vessels will be operated by MOL Drybulk. With the latest commitment, MOL Group will have a total of nine Wind Challenger-equipped vessels, bringing the total number of vessels equipped with wind propulsion systems to 11.

Among the seven vessels to be equipped with wind propulsion systems, six new bulk carriers will each be equipped with one Wind Challenger, MOL said.

The Wind Challenger is a device developed by MOL and Oshima Shipbuilding, which converts wind energy to propulsive force using telescoping hard sails.

Construction contracts have already been signed with Oshima Shipbuilding for three of the six vessels, and preparations are under way for construction contracts for the remaining three vessels.

For these six vessels to be installed the Wind Challenger, each vessel is expected to reduce fuel consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by an average of about 7-16% per year by installing one sail.

MOL added it is also considering installing the Rotorsail, a wind propulsion system manufactured by Anemoi Marine Technologies, headquartered in the UK, on some of these vessels. The combined use of both technologies is expected to reduce fuel and GHG emissions by an average of about 15-28% per year.

The Rotor Sail is propelled by the wind blowing into the rotating cylinder-shaped rotor, which creates a pressure differential around the rotor. Since this thrust is generated at right angles to the wind direction, winds from other than the direction of the vessel can always be utilized to propel the vessel by changing the direction of the rotor's rotation, according to MOL.

In addition, MOL Drybulk has decided to install two Ventfoils, a foldable and autonomous unit for wind-assisted ship propulsion, manufactured by Dutch-based EconoWind, on one of its new multipurpose vessels, slated for delivery 2025 and operated under a time charter.