Thursday, October 8, 2015

Renewable Energy Patent Can Power Vessels from RoRo Ferries to Container Ships

Japanese System Harnesses Both Wind and Sun
Shipping News Feature
JAPAN – Maritime technology company, Eco Marine Power (EMP) has been granted a patent in Japan related to its Aquarius Marine Renewable Energy (MRE) System, a combined wind & solar power solution for a variety of ships, ranging from RoRo ferries to container vessels, and consisting of an advanced integrated system of rigid sails, solar panels, energy storage modules, and marine computer platforms that is intended to enable ships to tap into renewable energy by harnessing the power provided by both wind and sun.

The rigid sails that will be used by the Aquarius MRE System are based on EMP's EnergySail® technology (Patent Pending). EMP's EnergySail technology has already passed feasibility & function testing at the Aquarius Innovation Lab in Osaka, Japan, and earlier this year it was announced that Teramoto Iron Works in Onomichi, Japan, would be the production centre for the EnergySail.

In addition the marine solar power component of the Aquarius MRE System was successfully evaluated this year on-board the high speed car and passenger ferry Blue Star Delos. Commenting on the approval of the patent, Greg Atkinson, Chief Technology Officer of Eco Marine Power said:

"The granting of this patent, which covers much of the core technology behind the Aquarius MRE System, is another major milestone for Eco Marine Power. It will help clear the path towards full commercialisation of the system and allow us present to shipping companies and shipyards a viable renewable energy system for ships."

In April we wrote how EMP had gained acceptance from the classification society Class NK to approve the company’s solar powered solutions, leaving the way clear for wider acceptance for what is to some a logical evolution of power at sea.

Photo: Solar array aboard the Blue Star Delos.