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On September 7th, 2023, GTT announced that it had led a fundraising round to support the development of bound4blue, a technology developer of automated Wind-Assisted Propulsion System (WAPS) for maritime transport.

A product of bound4blue's ingenuity, eSAIL® enables vessels to harness wind as a free, abundant, and infinite energy source. This Wind-Assisted Propulsion System assists ship owners and operators in achieving regulatory compliance with the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and European Union regulations aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and enhancing energy efficiency.

eSAIL® distinguishes itself from conventional wing structures by leveraging a thicker aerodynamic profile and suction to generate lift forces six to seven times greater than a regular wing sail. In other words, it can deliver the same propelling force with less surface area than a regular wing sail, all with minimal power consumption and without mechanical complexity (such as inertial loads, vibrations, constant movement, etc.), ensuring simple, safe, and reliable operations. When installed on a vessel, eSAIL® technology is designed so that its high-lift ability maximizes fuel savings in a cost-efficient manner.

bound4blue is able to tailor sailing plans for individual vessels, reducing payback periods to less than 5 years, and positions its eSAIL® WAPS as an attractive and sustainable option suitable for any type of vessel - including tankers, bulkers, Ro-Ros, cruises, ferries, and gas carriers, regardless of size or age.

bound4blue has already installed its eSAIL® system on vessels and secured agreements with esteemed shipowners, such as Louis Dreyfus Company, Odfjell, Marubeni, SNA Tuhaa Pae and Eastern Pacific Shipping. These partnerships demonstrate a growing recognition of the potential of eSAIL® technology.

In a notable development, the MV Atlantic Orchard vessel, Chartered by Louis Dreyfus Company and owned by Wisby Tankers, is scheduled for retrofitting with four 26-meter-high eSAIL® in 2024. This initiative aims to reduce annual fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by a minimum of 10%, depending on vessel routing, highlighting the immediate impact of eSAIL® technology.

Similarly, fitting eSAIL® on the Ville de Bordeaux vessel will support Louis Dreyfus Armateurs’ ambitious goal to halve CO2 emissions from maritime operations by 2030, compared to a 2015 baseline. Based on bound4blue's estimations and depending on the vessel's routing, these eSAIL® could potentially achieve significant annual savings in fuel and CO2 emissions, amounting to up to 560 tonnes and 1,800 tonnes respectively.

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