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GH Craft, Teijin’s composite structure design development and evaluation unit, has been taking part in the Wind Challenger Project, an industry-university joint research project, since October 2009.
The project, jointly launched in October 2009 by the University of Tokyo and leading Japanese shipping companies, is promoting the development of rigid but retractable sails that will harness wind-power to enable cargo ships to reduce their fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. The sails envisioned for actual use are expected to measure 50m by 20m, or 1,000m2 in area.
GH Craft explains that it is designing and producing such sails for ships currently under development for the Wind Challenger Project. The company provided small-scale sails measuring 20m by 8m for on-land testing in Nagasaki, Japan beginning in January 2014. The small-scale sails are made of a foamed core material sandwiched between glass fibre reinforced plastics. The test vessel will have five 15m-high retractable sails.
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