Over the last few years ClassNK has identified and supported the development of wind propulsion technologies as an important contribution to the mix of solutions for a greener shipping industry.

In September last year, the classification society released “Guidelines for Wind-Assisted Propulsion Systems for Ships” to minimize potential risks of these installations on hull structure, crew, and surrounding environment.

Furthermore, it has developed class notations for ships whose equipment is designed and installed in line with the guidelines.

The membership to IWSA aligns with an upsurge of interest in both wind-assist and primary wind propulsion solutions in Japan and in the industry worldwide, ClassNK explained.

IWSA is a not-for-profit organisation that for the last five years has been bringing together wind propulsion projects, shipping companies, shipyards and research organisations to help further develop this family of technologies along with promoting the wind as a credible, viable and increasingly economic propulsion option for commercial vessels.

As the class society, provision and verification of the operating environment or conditions for the use of new technology is our essential task. Expecting that wind propulsion technology will play an even greater role as ships’ power source, ClassNK has been developing necessary standards to ensure the safety and soundness of designs applying them. Utilizing our expertise and R&D outcome, I’m looking forward to working together with IWSA members to meet the challenges of emission reduction,

...said Mr. Hayato Suga, Corporate Officer and Director of Plan Approval and Technical Solution Division.

ClassNK has more than 250 million gross tons on register, sending therefore a strong signal to the shipping industry that they are ready to work with designers, developers and shipping companies on wind technologies.

2020 will be a critical year for wind propulsion developments as we enter the ‘decade to deliver’ on GHG emission reductions. We are delighted to welcome ClassNK aboard at this important juncture and the expertise they bring to IWSA will be invaluable to help deliver credible, viable and safe wind solutions into the market,

...Gavin Allwright, Secretary General of IWSA states.

Maersk Tankers, Louis Dreyfus Armateurs, MOL, DFDS, K-lines, Renault, Airbus, Vale, Viking Lines, Drax, Ultrabulk, Chantiers De L’Atlantique, Wallenius Marine, Becker Marine, CMCS & DSIC and Oshima shipyards are among the companies having engaged with, testing and installing wind propulsion systems in the last few years.

This pace of development is slated to continue, with the UK government forecasting last year that the market for wind propulsion technologies will grow to a £2 billion a year market in the 2050s.

In addition, a 2017 EU-commissioned report predicted up to 10,000 wind propulsion installations within the next decade alone.