Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Old Technology Aims to Assist New Design Bulk Shipping Carrier to Best Modern Environmental Limits

Flettner Rotary Sails and Solar Power to Help Cut Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Shipping News Feature

SWEDEN – WORLDWIDE – Flettner sails are back in the news! And if you have no idea what they are then you probably should. The rotary sail system, which has been looked at closely by a bevy of shipping notables of late, was highlighted four years ago when our article gave the history of Anton Flettner's 1920's invention to harness the power of the wind.

Now the ingenious system is to be incorporated into a next-generation product and chemical tanker, the IMOFlexMAX, a design from Stena Bulk, a class of vessel which the company says will be able to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 25% compared to modern product tankers.

The next generation of Stena’s current IMOIIMAX design, the new ship has been designed by naval architects at sister company Stena Teknik and is based on 40 years of tanker shipping experience. From hull design to vessel propulsion, these ships will incorporate the latest technology setting, Stena insists, a new standard for the global tanker industry.

The vessels will be equipped with Flettner rotors and solar panels to harvest energy from wind and sunlight. They will be powered by efficient dual-fuel engines that can run on LNG as well as conventional low-sulphur fuels using today’s newest technology, but also open the way for further development of alternatives with consideration to trade lanes and customers’ expectations.

Aiming to comply with, or exceed, the Paris Agreement targets and the UN’s Sustainability and Development Goals Stena claims the design will be able to reduce greenhouse gases by at least 25 % with a potential to reach up to 45 % compared to modern product tankers run on low-sulphur fuel oil. Erik Hånell, President and CEO at Stena Bulk, commented:

“The world’s need for reliable, innovative and sustainable transportation of liquid products is increasing and it will continue to do so as the world’s population grows and global living standards continue to improve. The plan is for the IMOFlexMAX vessels to be deployed in Stena Bulk’s logistics system in the global market along with the IMOIIMAX.

”The IMOFlexMAX vessels will constitute an important asset for Stena Bulk, as well as for its partners, in strengthening our position as the market-leading, cross-trading specialists in the MR segment with increased efficiency and reduction of greenhouse gases. The prototype is one step further in Stena Bulk’s vision of being our customers’ first choice for safety, innovation and performance in the transportation of oil, chemicals and gas.”