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Next generation short-sea ship dual-fuel engine and propulsion retrofit technologies

Project description

Symbiotic ship engine and propulsion innovations

A consortium of eight industry and academic partners is conducting a 3-year research project to develop two symbiotic ship engine and propulsion innovations. The EU-funded SeaTech project will develop an operational version of an oscillating flapping-wing propulsion device and test the energy saving device aboard short-sea vessels. The innovation will be characterised by high retrofitability and maintainability. It will also offer shipowners a return-on-investment of 400 % due to fuel and operational cost savings. The project estimates CO2 savings of 32.5 million tonnes annually if just 10 % all EU short-sea vessels are retrofitted with SeaTech. This is equal to the emissions of 200 000 passenger cars per year.


The SeaTech consortium is proposing to develop two symbiotic ship engine and propulsion innovations, that when combined, lead to an increase of 30% in fuel efficiency and radical emission reductions of 99% for NOx, 99% for SOx, 46% for CO2 and 94% for particulate matter. The innovations will be characterized by high retrofitability, maintainability and offer ship owners a return-on-investment of 400% due to fuel and operational cost savings.
The proposed renewable-energy-based propulsion innovation is the bio-mimetic dynamic wing mounted at the ship bow to augment ship propulsion in moderate and higher sea states, capturing wave energy, producing extra thrust and damping ship motions.
The proposed power generation innovation is based on the idea of achieving ultra-high energy conversion efficiency by precisely controlling the auto-ignition of the fuel mixture at every operating point of the engine for achieving radically reduced emissions.
The ultimate objective of the project is to upscale both technologies, demonstrate them in relevant environment and finally model the expected complementarities and synergy effects of deploying both innovations on a short-sea vessel scenario by extrapolating demonstration data with the help of a bespoke Advanced Data Analytics Framework.
The project partners envisage to commercialize both symbiotic innovations in the European and Asian short-sea market by 2025, followed by the adjacent deep-sea market. Assuming only 10% of EU short-sea vessels would be retrofitted with SeaTech, this would result in CO2 savings of 32.5 million tons annually, which equals the emissions of 200.000 passenger cars/year. Further impact includes savings of EUR 85.2 billion in health and climate change damages due to lower emissions, the creation of +100 jobs at the project partners with a cumulative net profit of EUR 820 million in the first 5 years post-commercialisation, and the indirect creation of 250 new jobs in the EU shipyard industry.

Call for proposal


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Sub call



Net EU contribution
€ 474 589,00
8017 JR Zwolle

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Oost-Nederland Overijssel Noord-Overijssel
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Total cost
€ 707 541,25

Participants (7)