MITSUI O.S.K. Lines and Tohoku Electric Power Co have announced plans to proceed with a joint study regarding the installation of the world’s first hard sail system (Wind Challenger) on a coal carrier.

Wind Challenger is a telescoping hard sail to convert wind energy to propulsive force.

Installation of the system on merchant ships is said to have the potential to significantly cut fuel consumption, which in turn reduces the environmental impact of vessel operation while improving economic efficiency.


MOL and Tohoku Electric report jointly studying the installation of the Wind Challenger on the coal carriers that transport coal to Tohoku Electric’s thermal power plants.

It was recently confirmed that a vessel equipped with the Wind Challenger is acceptable in port facilities of the coal thermal power plants owned by Tohoku Electric.

The companies plan to verify the system’s impact on discharging operation and calling in/out at coal unloading port facilities, its effect on reduction of greenhouse gas emissions while the ship is underway, and other factors, with a view to launching the world’s first vessel equipped with the Wind Challenger after 2022.