In another significant move towards commercial release of the EnergySail, Eco Marine Power (EMP) announced that it has begun collaboration with ClassNK (Nippon Kaiji Kyokai) to confirm design requirements and issues related to sea trials.
According to a press release from the renewable energy tech company, the goal is to pave the way to the full commercial production of the EnergySail and thus complete the preparation of technologies required for the release of EMPâ€™s Aquarius Marine Renewable Energy or Aquarius MRE solution.
The patented Aquarius MRE is an advanced integrated system of rigid sails, marine-grade solar panels, energy storage modules, charging system and marine computers that will enable ships to tap into renewable energy by harnessing the power provided by the wind and sun. These sources of emission-free power will lead to lower fuel consumption on ships plus reduce CO2 emissions and the release of other noxious gases.
The rigid sails developed by Eco Marine Power are known as EnergySailâ€™s. These are automatically positioned by a computer system to best suit the prevailing weather conditions and can be lowered and stored when not in use or in bad weather.
Areas of collaboration between Eco Marine Power and ClassNK will include operation of the automated control system, software and hardware safety measures and installation methods.
Commenting on this latest news, Greg Atkinson, Chief Technology Officer at Eco Marine Power stated, â€śThe collaboration with ClassNK is a very important part of our development strategy as we work towards verifying the operation of our EnergySail both ashore and on a ship during sea trials. We also want to make sure we donâ€™t repeat the mistakes made during the development of previous sail-assisted or wind-assisted propulsion solutions, especially in terms of operability. From our point of view itâ€™s not a race to be first and repeat what has been done before; instead our focus is on innovation with an emphasis on quality and long term performance.â€ť
Also involved in the collaboration process with ClassNK are EMPâ€™s strategic partners Teramoto Iron Works, The Furukawa Battery Company and KEI System. Shore based testing of the EnergySail will be conducted at the Onomichi Marine Tech Test Center (MTTC) and EMP is also involved in discussions with several ship owners regarding the worldâ€™s first installation of a complete Aquarius MRE solution.