The reduction is fuel would also yield an environmental benefit through the subsequent reduction in emissions.
Japanese technology company Eco Marine Power Co. Ltd. (EMP) announced in a press release Friday its design for a new rigid sail known as the EnergySail, which is capable of using both wind and solar energy to help power a vessel and reduce fuel costs.
The reduction in fuel would also yield an environmental benefit through the subsequent reduction in emissions.
Designed to withstand high winds to "sudden micro-bursts", EMP say a unique aspect of the sail is its ability to be used at anchor or in port.
The EnergySail was designed to be fitted to a wide variety of ships ranging from large Capesize bulk ore carriers to naval and coastguard patrol ships, with a variation of the sail suitable for Unmanned Surface Vessels (USV's) and smaller ships such as passenger ferries or fishing vessels currently under development.
Greg Atkinson, Director of Research & Design, Eco Marine Power
Wind and solar power technologies will improve during a ship's operational lifespan
"We spent a lot of time during the design phase focused on incorporating safety features into the EnergySail and also making it flexible in terms of being easy to re-configure or upgrade the device," said Greg Atkinson, Director of Research & Design at Eco Marine Power.
"Wind and solar power technologies will improve during a ship's operational lifespan so in our view it was critical that the EnergySail be easily upgradable," he added.
EMP said that the EnergySail has primarily been designed for EMP's Aquarius MRE System however other applications for its use were also being studied.