Cargill and SkySails to Launch World’s Largest Wind and Kite-Powered Vessel

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kite powered cargo ship with sail

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Wind Power Revolutionizing the Shipping Industry

This December, Cargill will be the first company to implement SkySails‘ innovative wind and kite-assisted sail technology on one of its 30,000 tonne cargo ships, with the goal of reducing the vessel’s fuel consumption by up to 35%, and setting a new standard for greenhouse gas reduction in the shipping industry.


Shipping and Sailing with a Giant Kite

The kite, which will be 320 m2 and fly between 100 and 420 m above the ship, is connected to the cargo ship by a rope, which is attached to a computer. Depending on conditions, the computer positions the sail to make the best use of the wind at that time. Nearly all of the controls are automated, and the addition of the SkySails kite and technology to the ship has very little effect on the crew. And considering this incredible wind-powered technology will be implemented on such a large ship, referred to as a handysize vessel, there is no question SkySails kite solution can be implemented on ships of any size.


The Environmental Benefits of SkySails

The obvious benefits of using the wind to assist in shipping tens of thousands of tonnes of goods is the reduction in fuel consumption, which in turn leads to a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. A recent United Nations International Maritime Organisation study on the use of wind-assisted ships revealed that up to 100 million tonnes of CO2 could be cut every year if SkySails technology was widely adopted.


Less Fuel, Cleaner Air, Cheaper Goods

It stands to reason that the implementation of SkySails technology will also have a beneficial outcome for the end-consumer. If a business such as Cargill begins saving money on the amount of fuel required to ship their goods, prices of these same imported goods in stores should also be reduced.

Although we are a few years away from seeing widespread adoption of this technology, let’s hope that Cargill and SkySails innovative leap forward in the first quarter of 2012 sets a new standard for ocean transportation and shipping on the seas.

  • Ian Andrew

    As the Co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of Greener Ideal, Ian has been a driving force in environmental journalism and sustainable lifestyle advocacy since 2008. With over a decade of dedicated involvement in environmental matters, Ian has established himself as a respected expert in the field. Under his leadership, Greener Ideal has consistently delivered independent news and insightful content that empowers readers to engage with and understand pressing environmental issues.

    Ian’s expertise extends beyond editorial leadership; his hands-on experience in exploring and implementing sustainable practices equips him with practical knowledge that resonates with both industry professionals and eco-conscious audiences. This blend of direct involvement and editorial oversight has positioned Ian as a credible and authoritative voice in environmental journalism and sustainable living.

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