USA – Cargill, a global leader in agriculture and food production, has announced promising results from a six-month trial of the Pyxis Ocean, a vessel showcasing the potential of wind-assisted propulsion technology in revolutionizing sustainable maritime travel. 

Equipped with two WindWings developed by BAR Technologies, the MC Shipping Kamsarmax vessel has demonstrated significant fuel savings and emission reductions, marking a significant milestone in the quest for eco-friendly shipping solutions.

The Pyxis Ocean, which embarked on its journey in August 2023, has traversed various major oceans and navigated through significant capes, showcasing the efficacy of WindWings® technology. 

These towering sails, standing at 37.5 meters tall, function akin to large airplane wings and are controlled seamlessly from the ship’s bridge, adjusting automatically to optimize wind capture.

Jan Dieleman, President of Cargill’s Ocean Transportation business, lauded the success of the project and emphasized the collaborative effort between Cargill, BAR Technologies, MC Shipping, and the ship’s crew in achieving these remarkable results. 

The vessel has demonstrated fuel savings in line with predictions, averaging a reduction of 3 tonnes of fuel per day, underscoring the practical viability of wind-assisted propulsion technology.

Furthermore, the adoption of WindWings aligns closely with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) greenhouse gas strategy, which aims for 5 to 10 percent of energy to be derived from very low carbon sources by 2030. 

John Cooper, CEO of BAR Technologies, highlighted the Pyxis Ocean’s potential for even greater fuel savings, with projections indicating reductions of up to 11 tonnes per day in optimal conditions for vessels equipped with three WindWings, potentially increasing fuel and emissions reductions by 1.5 times.

The successful trial has also shed light on broader challenges facing the global maritime industry, including the adaptation of ports and terminals to accommodate Wind Assisted Propulsion (WAP) technology. 

Cargill has proactively engaged with over 250 ports to facilitate the seamless integration of WAP vessels into global trade routes, laying the groundwork for widespread adoption.

The Pyxis Ocean’s performance closely mirrors computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations conducted by BAR Technologies, with the vessel achieving substantial fuel savings and a 37% reduction in CO2 emissions in ideal sailing conditions. 

Annually, this translates to a CO2e reduction equivalent to removing 480 cars from the road, underscoring the significant environmental impact of this groundbreaking technology.

As Cargill continues to refine the operational, technical, and commercial aspects of the Pyxis Ocean, the company remains committed to driving innovation and sustainability in maritime transportation. An independent third party, DNV, has been enlisted to review and verify the fuel savings calculations, ensuring transparency and accuracy in the project’s outcomes.

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