World’s First Zero Emission Vessel- E/S Orcelle

The shipping industry is leaning toward the eco-trend with several green ships being made each year.  One such idea that has stood out among these ideas is the one to produce the world’s first ever zero emission vessel- the E/S Orcelle. Conceptualized by Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics, the vessel is to rely on wind, sun and wave energy to run itself. Not releasing any emissions into the environment, the highly advanced design of the Orcelle is said to provide optimum cargo space to transport cars and goods round the world.

The story of the Orcelle began in 2005 for the Expo Japan, when Wallenius Wilhelmsen were requested to develop a zero emission vessel model. The resultant E/S Orcelle, named after an endangered south-east Asian dolphin will run entirely on fuel cells, wave, wind and solar power to propel the vessel. Consequently it will require no oil or ballast water. Developed in order to stimulate research and development with relation to alternative resources, the E/S Orcelle stands for an Environmentally Sound ship.

In design, the Orcelle combines sustainable forms of energy captured through sails, solar panels and wave energy converters to generate the energy required by the vessel. This is then used to extract hydrogen from water with the aid of fuel cell technology. The resultant fuel is a clean fuel that can then be made use of. In this manner, there are zero emissions from the vessel as such. The subsequent electricity generated, can also be used immediately or stored for times of no wind, sun or waves. The only byproduct of this is heat and water.

The pentamaran hull design and removal of the conventional stern propeller with rudder ensures elimination of the need for ballast water. Ballast water is one of the 4 threats to the ocean according to the IMO. Having an optimum cargo capacity of 85,000m2, Orcelle will have 50% more space than conventional car carriers. This translates into a vessel capable of transporting 6,500 vehicles with eight cargo decks that are capable of being adjusted. The use of lightweight aluminum and thermoplastic composite materials further will give the Orcelle the advantage of carrying 3,000 more tons of cargo than seen in traditional vessels.

The E/S Orcelle, is still under development with the Wallenius Wilhelmsen group continuing research on elements identified in the vessel. The vessel is slated to launch in the next 20 years, with the advent of renewable energy resources taking over – around 2025.

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