The first (Maybe not the first ever. mrjonmoore.) wind propelled vessel in the world is expected to dock in Montevideo on Thursday loaded with turbines, columns and rotor blades for a wind farm which is being built in the north of Uruguay.
E-ship 1 belongs to the German company Enercon specializing in alternative energies; she is 130 meters long and left Germany last November en route to South America.
The vessel underwent tests in 2010 and since then has sailed over 170.000 nautical miles and according to the company’s release is “designed for the transport of Enercon wind turbine components and uses the wind for propulsion based on four vertical cylinders on deck”.
“The system was developed in 1920 by the German engineer Anton Flettner and is based on the Magnus effect by which and in a simplified form the air generated by the rotation of the vertical cylinder generates the vessel’s propulsion” points out Enercon, which specializes in wind or eolian energy.
The E-ship 1 system represents an annual fuel saving of 25% and avoids the emission of 5.000 tons of CO2 into the atmosphere, and at the same time does not need a constant or complicated maintenance system.