The Winds of Decarbonisation are Strengthening: Tharsis Sea-River Shipping, signs contract with eConowind and NG shipyard for new Wind-Assist Installation

05 November 2020 Delfzijl, Netherlands
Even with the current restrictions and challenges that face the shipping industry with the pandemic and the latest low oil prices, wind-assisted propulsion solutions are still making headway as the decarbonisation drive in the industry accelerates and companies are looking for technology solutions that are market ready and have the potential to deliver substantial savings today. Netherlands-based eConowind and Tharsis announced their collaboration today with eConowind contracted to install two of their wind-assist 3 x 9m TwinFoil® units on their 88m, 2,364 dwt diesel-electric general cargo vessel, MV Tharsis.
“We always try to use as little as fuel as possible on our weekly voyage from Duisburg to the East coast of the UK. Using currents and tides and optimizing our schedule. Adding wind-assisted propulsion will further reduce our fuel consumption. Especially interesting is to see how much the tipping point of starting a second generator will shift.” states Jan Albert Bosma, co-owner of Tharsis Sea-River Shipping
The eConowind-units are both integrated in a specially designed aluminum Flatrack from which the folding TwinFoil® units can be deployed. The TwinFoil® unit is a further innovation for eConowind next to their previously designed VentiFoil® units. The TwinFoil® is a wing with a flap principle similar to those used by aircraft during landing and take-off. Setting the wings optimally relative to the wind will be done by a small third steering-wing, which is fast and reliable. The Netherlands based NG shipyard will install the system and bring their experience of fabricating aluminum constructions in order to stay under the 2500 kg total weight as needed for the operations on the vessel. Albert Keizer, CEO of NG-shipyard states:
“We are very happy to bring our experience in the specific challenges in this project. We specialize in light-weight but durable constructions at sea and focus on high performance ships with sustainable propulsion. This project combines all of that. We can offer the system at reduced costs with the help of the SDS-program of the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy.
Jan Albert Bosma adds, “We look forward to evaluating the wings and do research together in the Wind Assisted Ship Propulsion (WASP) project, part of the EU Interreg North Sea region program.“
The WASP (Wind Assisted Ship Propulsion) project is funded by the Interreg North Sea Europe program, part of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and brings together universities and wind-assist technology providers with ship owners to install, research, trial and validate the operational performance of a selection of wind propulsion solutions.
We are delighted to add Tharsis to our customer base and with both river and North Sea routing with varying winds we expect a lot from the TwinFoil®. Of particular interest is the combination of this self-adjusting technology in combination with a modern diesel-electric drive, which in theory should give optimal results.” Comments Frank Nieuwenhuis, CEO of eConowind.
The installation of the system will be the last of five installations under the WASP project and it is scheduled for February 2021.



Tharsis Sea-River Shipping

Tharsis Sea-River Shipping is a Dutch, privately owned shipping company with almost 40 years of experience in sea-river shipping. The owners have a strong focus on sustainable shipping and are involved in several ambitious projects working towards zero-emission.
Designed and fully built at Dutch Shipyard De Kaap in 2012 as a one-off vessel, the MV Tharsis is unique in its kind. With her innovative diesel-electric propulsion she sets the environmental benchmark and reduces the carbon footprint while with a ballast air draft of 6 metres and a minimal sailing draft of 1.65 metres she can go where no other seagoing ships can go.

Media contact: Jan Albert Bosma E-mail:
PO Box 299, 9930 AG Delfzijl, The Netherlands

Econowind BV

Econowind offers and provides wind assisted propulsion to seagoing ships. VentiFoil® Units can be containerized inside a 40ft container or fixed to a vessel so the size of the foils are not limited to container dimensions.

The VentiFoil® is a wing shaped element using modern innovations in aerodynamics creating high propelling force relative to its size. Smart suction is integrated in the wing, resulting in double the force of the VentiFoil®, while reefing when needed.

Media contact: Frank Nieuwenhuis
Address: Leonard Springerlaan 7, 9727 KB Groningen, Netherlands.

WASP Project

The WASP (Wind Assisted Ship Propulsion) project, funded by the Interreg North Sea Europe programme, part of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) to the tune of €5.4 million. The project brings together universities, wind-assist technology providers with ship owners to research, trial and validate the operational performance of a selection of wind propulsion solutions thus enabling wind propulsion technology market penetration and contributing to a greener North Sea transport system through harvesting the regions abundant wind potential. This fully aligns with the wider programmes’ objective of promoting the development and adoption of products, services and processes to accelerate the greening of the North Sea Region.

For further information: Danitsja van Heusden-van Winden, WASP Project Leader
NL Maritime Technology Foundation
+31 (0)88 44 51 035
Media Contact: Gavin Allwright, WASP Work Package Leader: Communication
International Windship Association