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Reports : SINTEF Ocean Steers into the Wind

SINTEF Ocean has announced that in order to help support the development of the technology segment even further, it is joining (IWSA)

As wind-assist propulsion technologies for commercial shipping are starting to become available and installations are ramping up, there is also a growing interest in primary wind solutions or optimized whole vessel design solutions.

Since the opening of their towing tank in 1939, SINTEF Ocean (formerly MARINTEK) has carried out research on novel ship technologies of numerous types. Wind propulsion, though one of the oldest forms of ship propulsion, is having a renaissance, as part of the push towards more environmentally friendly shipping. Today, SINTEF Ocean has announced that in order to help support the development of the technology segment even further, it is joining the International Windship Association (IWSA), the member driven association that promotes and helps facilitate the uptake of wind propulsion  in commercial shipping

A webinar co-hosted by SINTEF Ocean and NTNU 

“A webinar co-hosted by SINTEF Ocean and NTNU (Norwegian University of Science and Technology) for the SFI Smart Maritime organization in December 2020, confirmed there is strong interest in wind propulsion from academia, technology providers, designers and ship owners. Full-scale installations are on the rise, and we see a steady flow of new low-emission and zero-emission concepts that include wind propulsion in some way,” states Sverre Anders Alterskjær, Research Manager at SINTEF Ocean’s Ships and Ocean Structures department.

Still, the application of wind-assisted propulsion adds some complexity to the prediction of vessel performance in terms of energy efficiency, seakeeping and maneuvering. Considerations that allow for optimizing the potential of wind assistance should ideally also be carried out both in vessel design and operation, both of which are key areas that SINTEF brings extensive expertise to Alterskjær continues, “We have been a follower of the IWSA for some time, and have appreciated the open sharing of news, publications and relevant events on the webpage even for non-members. However, we feel that it is now time that we enter as a member, and we look forward to contributing more actively to connect, learn and share our research within the exciting field of wind propulsion.

Gavin Allwright

Wind propulsion future

SINTEF Ocean is working on several projects involving wind-assisted propulsion and is currently carrying out internal research and development on numerical and experimental methods for evaluating different types of wind propulsors, and the optimization of vessels with wind propulsion in mind.

“Having SINTEF Ocean join IWSA now is very timely. Bringing their experience and R&D work on evaluating wind systems will strengthen our work to standardize those methods in the future, which is critical work as the momentum in the sector continues to build,” comments Gavin Allwright, IWSA Secretary General. “We are lookingforward to working together to help realize a credible, viable wind propulsion future for the industry 


SINTEF Ocean: SINTEF Ocean (formerly MARINTEK) is an independent research institute located in Trondheim, Norway. In the maritime sector, SINTEF Ocean conducts research and development for ship designers, ship owners, suppliers, navies, shipyards, ports, and maritime authorities worldwide.

SINTEF Ocean performs research in fields ranging from initial concept studies, to detailed design optimisation and ship system verification tests, with research at model scale, full scale, or through computation, depending on the task.

This is achieved through the combined use of our extensive facilities: the Towing Tank, Cavitation Tunnel, and Ocean Basin laboratories, equipped with specialised equipment and test techniques for wind assisted vessels, as well as through CFD simulations, advanced numerical tools, and route simulation software.


Ongoing projects include: Zero Emission Cruise Vessel, CruiZero http://www.smartmaritime.no/news/vard-to-design-a-cruise-ship-with-wind-assisted-propulsion/
Zero Emission Coaster, ZeroCoaster https://www.sintef.no/siste-nytt/2021/nytt-skipsdesign-skal-gjore-norsk-skipsfart-gronnere/

International Windship Association (IWSA): facilitates and promotes wind propulsion solutions for commercial shipping worldwide and brings together all parties in the

development of a wind ship sector to shape industry and government attitudes and policies.

IWSA is a member driven, not-for-profit association made up of over 130 wind propulsion technology suppliers and ship development projects, designers, naval architects, engineers, academics, NGO’s and seafarers with five main areas of activity:

Network development, Policy, Education, Communications and Facilitation. www.wind-ship.org

press release : Special eBlue economy

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