The Orcelle project –
Towards Wind-Powered Ships for Deep Sea Cargo Transport

Paper presented at the SNAME Maritime Convention 2023. Authors: Sofia Werner, Apostolos Papanikolau, Mikael Razola, Carl Fagergren, Lars Dessen, Jakob Kuttenkeuler, Vendela Santen, Christoph Steinbach.

Using wind to power cargo vessels re-started on a commercial scale about a decade ago. Currently, there are 25+ wind-assisted vessels in commercial trade. They are equipped with technologies like Flettner rotors, wings or kites, which gives fuel reductions in the magnitude of 1-20 %. Although these are significant fuel savings, this is still not enough to effectively respond to the challenges for zero GHG emissions of the maritime industry.
With the goal of demonstrating that even higher energy reduction and drastic reduction of emissions is possible, 11 representatives of the European maritime industry and research community have recently joined forces in the EU-funded project Orcelle, led by Wallenius Wilhelmsen Ocean. The current paper will present the project’s ambition, scope of work and expected outcome.