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The 3,600dwt general cargo vessel MV Ankie has made her first voyage with two eConowind Ventifoil wings installed. The vessel sailed the North Sea from Delfzijl in the Netherlands to Hamburg and Norway and then back to Rotterdam.

The modular Ventifoil units are wings with vents and an internal fan that uses boundary layer suction to double the force of the Ventifoil, while reefing when needed. Together with the Technical University of Delft and MARIN, eConoship studied several concepts of wind propulsion, concluding the suction wings studied by Jacques Cousteau were most promising.

On the captain’s demand, the Ventifoils deploy automatically to the optimal angle relative to the apparent wind. The generated force is transferred into the deck, and motor power can therefore be reduced. The Ventifoils can be containerized inside a 40-foot container or fixed to a vessel. Read on.