Norsepower Completes Installation of Two Tiltable Rotor Sails

Courtesy Norsepower

Published Jan 21, 2021 12:12 AM by The Maritime Executive

Norsepower announced Wednesday that it has installed two 35-meter rotor sails aboard a ro/ro operated by SEA-CARGO, a shipowner in the North Sea market. The installation is the world’s first with a tiltable Flettner rotor, and it greatly reduces the air draft impact of the sytem. 

According to Norsepower, the installation on the ro/ro SC Connector should achieve a fuel consumption, fuel cost and carbon emissions reduction of up to 25 percent. In good wind conditions, the sailing vessel will maintain her regular service speed by sail alone, the company says.

"The Rotor Sail technology has been proven in the market for a while, but the size is unique for our project. The sails are far more efficient than conventional sails of same size and the tilting function is essential to our voyage routes," said Ole Sævild, managing director of SEA-CARGO. 

The company's rotor sail is a modernized version of the Flettner rotor, a spinning cylinder that uses the Magnus effect to harness wind power to generate forward thrust - functionally similar to a sail, but self-tending and more compact.

SC Connector, which sails between Western Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands, Sweden and Poland, transits under multiple bridges and powerlines. This required the adaptation of the Rotor Sails to tilt to a nearly-horizontal position when required.

“Completing the installation has been extremely rewarding," said Tuomas Riski, Norsepower's CEO. "This installation demonstrates the technology can go a long way to future proofing IMO GHG compliance, while ensuring significant emissions, and fuel reductions to a variety of vessel profiles today."