Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image

International Windship Association | May 20, 2024

Scroll to top


Technology & Design

Technology & Design

IWSA logo

IWSA members and leading experts in the field of wind propulsion will be posting updates of wind propulsion technology, ship design, materials and supporting systems.

Wind Propulsion Technologies break down into 7 main categories, with all technologies being fully automated in operation for ease of use, safety and efficiency:

  • Soft Sail – both traditional sail and new designs of dynarig etc.
  • Hard Sail – wingsails, foils and JAMDA style rigs. Some rigs have solar panels for added ancillary power generation.
  • Flettner Rotor or Rotor Sails – rotating cylinders operated by low power motors that use the Magnus effect (difference in air pressure on different sides of a spinning object) to generate thrust
  • Suction Wings (Ventifoil, Turbosail) – non-rotating wing with vents and internal fan (or other device) that use boundary layer suction for maximum effect.
  • Kites – the deployment of dynamic or passive kites off the bow of the vessel to assist propulsion or to generate a mixture of thrust and electrical energy.
  • Turbines – using marine adapted wind turbines to either generate electrical energy or a combination of electrical energy and thrust.
  • Hull Form – the redesign of ship’s hulls to capture the power of the wind to generate thrust.

    NOTE – of course for smaller vessels traditional soft sails and some other solutions can be installed to be operated manually or have manual operation as a safety option. For many projects, much of the research and technology R&D has been completed or is near to completion and those projects are moving to sea-trials and test installations. Some of that research is already available from our Research Centre
Wind Propulsion Technology

Dynamic Performance of Flettner Rotor with and without Thom Discs
T. J. Craft, H. Lacovides and B. E. Launder
Turbulence Mechanics Group, School of MACE, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK.

Kite Technology (Pull Shipping To Greener Future)
J. Sidhartha, M. Satya Phani Kumar
International Journal of Innovative Research & Development 2012

Performance of auxiliary wind propulsion for merchant ships using a kite
Peter Naaijen, Delft University of Technology & Vincent Koster, Delft University of Technology

Revival of the Modern Wing Sails for the Propulsion of Commercial Ships
P Shukla, K Ghosh
World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology
International Journal of Mathematical, Computational, Physical and Quantum Engineering, 2009

Trials of Discrete Values Control by a Tracked Model for Wing Sale Eco-ship
Makoto Katoh, Akinobu Asada
Journal of Machinery Manufacturing and Automation (JMMA) 2013

Use of Flettner Rotors in Efficient Ship Design
DR Pearson – ‎Influence of EEDI on Ship Design, 24-25 September 2014: The Royal Institution of Naval Architects. 2014

“Wind Challenger” the Next Generation Hybrid Sailing Vessel
Kazuyuki Ouchi, Kiyoshi Uzawa, Akihiro Kanai, and Masanobu Katori
Third International Symposium on Marine Propulsors, 2013

Ship Design

Group Design Project – Main Report Concept Design of a Fast Sail Assisted Feeder Container Ship
Aaron Burden, Thomas Lloyd, Simon Mockler, Lorenzo Mortola, Ie Bum Shin, Ben Smith
Supervisor: Grant E Hearn, Academic year 2009/2010

Investigation into Underwater Fin Arrangement Effect on Steady Sailing Characteristics of a Sail Assisted Ship
Yoshimasa Minami, Tadashi Nimura ,Toshifumu Fujiwara, Michio Ueno, Maritime Safety Department, National Maritime Research Institute, Mitaka, Tokyo
Proceedings of The Thirteenth (2003) International Offshore and Polar Engineering Conference, Honolulu

Routing Analysis & Software Systems

Low C for the High Seas Flettner rotor power contribution on a route Brazil to UK
Michael Traut, Alice Bows, Paul Gilbert, Sarah Mander, Peter Stansby, Conor Walsh,
Ruth Wood, Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, School of Mechanical
, Aeronautical and Civil Engineering, University of Manchester  2012

Route Optimization Algorithm for Minimum Fuel Consumption of Wind-assisted Ship.
Z Yingjun, L Yuankui, Y Xuefeng – Journal of Applied Sciences, 2013

Fuel Consumption Minimization Procedure of Sail-assisted Motor Vessel based on a Systematic Meshing of the Explored Area
Stephane Marie, Eric Courteille – International Symposium on Ship Design & Construction – Environmentally Friendly Ships, Sep 2009, Tokyo, Japan.

Materials & Supporting Systems