Wind-assisted car carrier project backed by Høglund Marine Solutions

Marine technology provider, Høglund Marine Solutions, has taken a two-thirds stake in Vindskip AS, a company developing a wind and LNG-powered vessel concept.

Vindskip (wind ship) is a vessel design project for a car/truck carrier that combines wind and gas power to achieve the lowest possible emissions in its market segment. The design recently won the prestigious German Design Award 2020 for the category Excellent Product Design – Conceptual Transport.

With a majority share in Vindskip AS, Høglund will bring the company’s experience and expertise from providing LNG and automation solutions to the Vindskip project. Alongside co-owners and fellow Norwegian electric propulsion provider, STADT AS, Høglund will supply LNG fuel system, power management and automation technology.

The unique Vindskip design uses the shape of the hull to act like a sail, harnessing the wind to generate traction and provide auxiliary propulsion, while also reducing aerodynamic drag by up to 75% compared to a traditional vessel design.

The vessel will incorporate a weather routing module (WRM) that will calculate and recommend the most appropriate route for the vessel to take to harness the full potential of available wind conditions, optimising for fuel economy while meeting ETA. As well as using wind, the vessel concept will also be powered by a flexible hybrid electric-LNG propulsion system, which could use biogas (LBG) to further reduce GHG emissions. Dynamic engine management – which Høglund will be instrumental in developing and supplying – will optimise engine output to minimise excess fuel burn according to wind conditions and maintain constant speed.

It is estimated that the Vindskip design will emit 63% less CO2 and 96% less NOx than similar capacity car-carrying vessels currently in service. As the market for low-emission and electric road vehicles expands, the car carrying sector will need to reflect the manufacturers increasing focus on environmental sustainability.

Børge Nogva

“With the pressure on shipping to reduce GHG emissions increasing, it is more important than ever to demonstrate how innovative we can be in meeting this critical environmental challenge,” says Børge Nogva, president of Høglund Marine Solutions.

“I’m delighted that Høglund’s role in the development of the Vindskip concept has increased, which will allow us to collaborate and bring our expertise to this unique and innovative project. Wind-assisted propulsion has great potential – but it needs careful integration of hardware and software to realise.”

“As an industry, we need to start turning emissions-reducing ideas into reality, and effective collaboration will be critical,” says Terje Lade, manager of Vindskip. “I’m thrilled that Høglund is bringing their expertise to the project, which is setting a precedent of environmentally sound vessel design in the car-carrying sector and beyond.”

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