Zéphyr & Borée has been given approval in principle (AiP) by Bureau Veritas for its first open-top containership, demonstrating the feasibility of using wind propulsion on this type of vessel.

The 185 metre vessel is designed with five cargo holds, mostly open-top, and can carry 1,800 TEU. Propulsion is compliant with IMO’s Tier III requirements, and the vessel is equipped with shaft generators and a heat recovery system to minimise fuel consumption. The propulsion system is assisted by eight sails provided by Computed Wing Sails (CWS). Each can be steered to catch port and starboard winds, adjusting automatically depending on conditions.


Zéphyr & Borée’s containership will be assisted by five wing-sails Photo: Bureau Veritas

“Wind, even if it is not always available, is a serious option to help decarbonise the shipping industry,” said Laurent Leblanc, senior vice president technical & operations at Bureau Veritas Marine & Offshore.

“Wind propulsion systems can play a significant role by providing substantial propulsive energy. With this AiP, we are pleased to demonstrate the technology can be applied to containerships, which represent 17.5% of the global fleet [in tonnage].”

BV was involved from the very early stage of the design, reviewing the main principles to ensure the feasibility of the concept and identify any obstacles. The AiP confirms the design’s compliance with the most recent BV notations, including NR 206 on Wind Propulsion systems.