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“Chemical Challenger” uses wind energy

The tanker shipping company Chemship has commissioned the “Chemical Challenger”, the first ship with a wind-assisted ship propulsion system.

The ship will be deployed on Chemship’s transatlantic route between the east coast of the United States and the Mediterranean.

Four 16 m high aluminium wind sails have been installed on board the 134 m long “Chemical Challenger”. The VentoFoils from Econowind create a direct wind area of 180m2. The intelligent vacuum technology reportedly quintuples the wind power and creates a gross wind area of 900m2. This corresponds to an equivalent sail measuring 30 x 30 m, the company adds. Chemship expects the sails to reduce CO2 emissions by an average of 10%.

“Chemical Challenger” uses free energy

Chemship has a relatively young fleet with an average ship age of seven years. CEO Niels Grotz sees shipping returning to its roots with wind-assisted propulsion: “As an enthusiastic sailor, I know the power of the wind. We will now use this sustainable and free source of energy on the ‘Chemical Challenger’. Although shipping already has the lowest carbon footprint of all modes of transport, we can use the wind to make our existing fleet even more sustainable. With the VentoFoils, we will use less fuel and thus reduce CO2 emissions. For this ship, we expect an annual CO2 reduction of 850 tons. This is equivalent to the annual CO2 emissions of over 500 cars.

Customers expect CO2 reports

The emergence of wind-assisted sailing coincides exactly with the introduction of the European Emissions Trading Scheme for the shipping industry, according to Chemship. Since January 1, shipowners have been paying for the emissions caused by the transportation of goods by sea to and from European ports. “Our customers are increasingly demanding CO2 reporting. The better our ships perform, the higher the rating from our customers. Lower emissions are not only good for the environment, but also have a direct impact on the wallet,” says Grotz.

According to Chemship, the Econowind wind sails were chosen because they were easy to install without having to reinforce the ship. They are also lightweight, take up little space on deck and do not obstruct the crew’s view. At the touch of a button, they can fold or set the sails as required. According to the shipping company, the sails fold automatically from Wind Force Seven.

»Chemical Challenger«
“Chemical Challenger” is supported by wind energy on its voyages

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Caption: "Chemical Challenger" is supported on its journeys by wind energy