Japanese shipping company Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. has started demonstration tests of a new windshield for containerships, which has the potential to reduce wind resistance, save fuel, and reduce CO2 emissions.
The new windshield was installed on the bow of the MOL-operated containership MOL Marvel, and a demonstration test of its effectiveness in reducing CO2 emissions is under way.
The move was driven by the need to address the greater wind resistance arising from the increasing height of the containers loaded on the decks of today’s ever larger containerships.
“Development of the new device began with an examination of the bow’s aerodynamic form through wind tunnel testing. This led to the adoption of a horseshoe-shaped design, which encloses the front line of the stacked containers to maximize the wind resistance-reducing effect while minimizing the weight of the main unit. The new windshield has enough design strength to meet the ClassNK rules concerning wave impact pressure. In addition, by obliquely setting the containers placed along the sides of the vessel behind the windshield, the sides of the vessel will be more streamlined, further reducing wind resistance,” MOL explained.
MOL expects an annual average reduction of 2% in CO2 emissions, assuming the device is mounted on a 6,700 TEU containership plying the North Pacific Ocean route at speed of 17 knots. The new windshield is also expected to protect ships from green water on the bow deck when sailing in bad weather.
MOL jointly developed the device with MOL Techno-Trade, Ltd., Ouchi Ocean Consultant, Inc., Akishima Laboratory (Mitsui Zosen) Inc., and the University of Tokyo. The project was backed by the “Joint R&D for Industry Program”, in which Nippon Kaiji Kyokai promotes wide-ranging R&D activities in cooperation with industry, government and academia.