K-Line Launches Eco-Ship Featuring Solar Power Technology

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Friday February 12, 2016

Solar Frontier K.K (Solar Frontier) Thursday announced that its CIS solar panels have been installed on a vessel owned by Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd. (K Line), said to be the carrier's newest environmentally friendly transport ship.

"K Line is demonstrating how solar energy can improve the energy efficiency and reduce the ecological impact of the shipping industry," said Atsuhiko Hirano, CEO of Solar Frontier.

"This is one example of the greater role that solar energy has to play in our future, supporting an ever broader range of technologies in a wider range of industries."

The ship, a car-carrier named Drive Green Highway, is said to integrate "advanced energy-efficient technologies" as well as design improvements in order to reduce the vessel's impact on the environment.

In addition to the solar panels, this was said to include a low NOx emission engine, SOx scrubber, and a low wind resistance design.

Drive Green Highway, which was launched Thursday at a ceremony in Japan's Nagasu Port, is said to be the first of 8 similar vessels that are set to be built under K Line's Drive Green Project.

Said to be equipped with the largest solar energy systems on any ship in the world, Drive Green Highway, a 7,500 passenger vehicle capacity carrier, features greenhouse gas suppression systems and is expected to emit 25 percent less carbon dioxide (CO2), 50 percent less nitrogen oxide (NOx), and 90 percent less sulfur oxide (SOx) per vehicle transported.

"K Line selected Solar Frontier's CIS modules to install on their new ship because they generate higher electricity yield (kilowatt-hours per kilowatt-peak) than crystalline silicon solar panels in real-world conditions," said Solar Frontier.

In December, Ship & Bunker reported that Japan-based Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) Peace Boat had completed the design of the "world's greenest" cruise ship, known as the Ecoship, a hybrid wind and solar powered vessel equipped with a "future-ready" hybrid engine.