Wind and Solar Marine Propulsion Technology Moves a Step Closer to Commercial Reality

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Monday May 4, 2015

Japan-based Eco Marine Power (EMP) along with its strategic partner, Teramoto Iron Works Co. Ltd. (Teramoto Iron Works) Friday announced they have taken another step towards bringing the Aquarius MRE wind and solar marine propulsion technology to market, having agreed to establish a new development and test facility in Onomichi, Hiroshima.

With the new Onomichi Marine-Tech Test Center, or Onomichi MTTC, EMP says it plans to build and test a complete Aquarius MRE System at the site with production due to start during 2015.

Onomichi MTTC was said to feature a large outdoor evaluation area that will allow testing of devices such as EMP's EnergySail, a rigid sail capable of using both wind and solar energy to help power a vessel.

The facility will be co-located at the Teramoto Iron Works Chojahara Workshop.

"Teramoto Iron Works, which was established in 1934, has a long history of product innovation and was involved in the production of rigid sails for ships in Japan around four decades ago. This makes the Omomichi MTTC the ideal location for the further development of the EnergySail and renewable energy solutions for shipping," said EMP.

It is understood that a number of other companies and technologies will be be involved with testing activities at the site, including The Furukawa Battery Company, and KEI System Limited, with which EMP has developed its Aquarius Monitoring and Automation system (Aquarius MAS) marine computer system that can monitor and control ship equipment, including its wind and solar power devices.

Last month EMP said it had received acceptance from classification society ClassNK for its Aquarius Marine Solar Power system to be installed aboard ClassNK classed vessels.