The French shipowner, Louis Dreyfus Armateurs SAS (LDA) and the Finnish mechanical sail company, Norsepower Oy Ltd, announced that the Norsepower Rotor Sail technology will be installed on the new low-emission RoRo fleet to be chartered to Airbus.
The Norsepower Rotor Sail is a modernized version of the old Flettner rotor concept that uses electric power to actively rotate the cylinder-shaped rotors on the deck. These rotating sails use the wind to produce powerful thrust, reducing fuel consumption, lowering emissions and costs.
The new low-emission vessels, which will be used to ship aircraft components for Airbus, will each be powered by a combination of six 35-meter tall Norsepower Rotor Sails and two dual-fuel engines running on maritime diesel oil and e-methanol. Routing software will optimize the vessels’ journey across the Atlantic, maximizing wind propulsion and avoiding drag caused by adverse ocean conditions.
LDA low-emission RoRo vessel with six Norsepower Rotor Sails.
By 2030, for the Transatlantic route, the new fleet will generate approximately 50% fewer CO2 emissions compared to 2023. The rotor sails will feature the new patented Norsepower Sentient Control (NPSC), a real-time force measurement, control and savings reporting system. This world-first tool enables each rotor to be controlled individually.
This optimizes efficiency by managing the complex aerodynamic interactions between the sails and the hydrodynamic behavior of the vessel. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and wind tunnel tests have been carried out during the design phase to optimize the sail arrangement and design.
This fleet-wide deal is a game changer for the whole auxiliary wind propulsion industry. Firstly, it is the biggest deal ever made in the mechanical sails market – and, in a world first, it includes our brand new Norsepower SentientControl tool. We are honored that the first charterer to utilize this advanced control system is Airbus, the foremost expert in aerodynamics in the world.—Tuomas Riski, CEO of Norsepower