17 December 2007

Return of the Age of Sail: Shipping Kite Scheme That May Work

In the age of sail, much of the world's commerce traveled between continents without burning an ounce of petroleum or coal. SkySails wants to bring back the sailing ship--at least in part.
The technology is different to traditional sailing systems because the sail area and the ship are separated by a towing rope. According to them, this result in higher power, easier deployment and higher safety than traditional sails (even automated ones.)

The company plans to sell kites that will generate 6,800HP (5,000kW.) And while fuel consumption can be reduced by 50% under optimal wind conditions, they say the average will range from 10 to 35%, enough to guarantee that transportation companies would adopt it, if not to reduce resources, save the planet and hug trees, to help their bottom line against oil prices.
For more details, check out the YouTube video below:


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