Green logistics: Nantes-based company Zéphyr & Borée is developing a sailing container ship

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Zéphyr & Borée develops low-carbon transport solutions. The shipping company from Nantes, Atlantic France, is working on an innovative sailing ship designed for heavy load transport which will be able to carry more than 1,800 containers. 

Maritime transport contributes to 90% of international trade. And although it is less polluting than other modes of transport, it is nevertheless one of the main industrial sectors responsible for global warming. The International Maritime Organization has therefore set the objective of reducing carbon emissions by 40% by 2030 and 50% by 2050.

An innovative sailing ship for international logistics

Planned to be launched in 2023, the Meltem will be one of the world’s first sailing container ships. It was conceived by Zéphyr & Borée, founded in Nantes in 2015, which specialises in the development of hybrid ships making the most of wind energy.

The company has already designed Canopée, a 125-meter long sailing cargo ship. It was built for ArianeGroup in order to transport the Ariane 6 rocket launcher from Germany to Guyana. The use of sails permitted a 35% reduction in polluting emissions.

The key figures of the Meltem:

185 meters long

8 sails of 256 sqm

1,830 containers

Adapting new sailing technology to cargo ships

To design their innovative ships, Zéphyr & Borée works closely with specialised partners and uses recent technological advances. 

In addition to the sails, the vessel has an engine with a hybrid diesel / LNG (natural gas) propulsion. And to optimise the use of the wind adapting to weather conditions, the ship is equipped with a meteorological routing tool developed by the Nantes based company D-Ice Engineering.

Zéphyr & Borée is also in close partnership with VPLP design. The naval architecture firm from Brittany developed automated and retractable wings. Used since 2010 on the sailboats for the America’s Cup, these wings generate twice the lift of a conventional sail!

Wind For Goods: an event on wind-powered maritime transport in September

Atlantic France will be home to the first French event dedicated to merchant sail shipping. Called Wind For Goods, it will take place in Saint-Nazaire on the 21st of September. 

Several conferences are planned during the day, and the audience will also discover many demonstrators such as the inflatable wing sail system used by famous skipper Michel Desjoyeaux, Neoline’s innovative sailing ship and the vessels of Zéphyr & Borée.

Business Solutions Atlantic France business advisors will be present at the event, and we are looking forward to seeing you there!

Places are limited, reserve your place now

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