In the Port of Concarneau, Construction et Réparation Navales, the cargo ship ANEMOS does not go unnoticed with its 53 metre high masts and 81 metre long green hull. This unusual vessel has not failed to attract the attention of those involved in the port and the people of Concarneau. Port users are admiring the progress of the work as they wait to see this cargo ship under sail. We went to meet her owner, TOWT, to find out more about this giant of the seas.

Anemos under construction in Concarneau

Under construction by the Piriou shipyards, ANEMOS is TOWT’s first sailing cargo ship. Masting took place in mid-March in the port of Concarneau. Rigger Éric Cochet explains: “This operation mobilised a team of five people for 6 weeks in Concarneau to finalise the preparation and anticipate the mast-laying. The biggest difficulty wasn’t their size, but their weight. Each mast weighs 3 tonnes on its own and up to 15 tonnes when fitted. The final and most spectacular stage is the mast-laying. After finding a favourable weather window, i.e. without too much wind or too much rain, we proceeded to install the masts on the sailing cargo ship. The operation went very smoothly”.

The interior fittings are now being fitted on the ship, before sea trials in April and delivery by the summer. TOWT is already planning the first transatlantic crossing to Colombia in August. The second ARTEMIS cargo ship is already under construction. “Artemis and Anemos are sisterships, and others could follow,” says Guillaume Le Grand, Chairman of TOWT.

Marine propulsion, a solution for decarbonising maritime freight transport

TOWT’s ambition is to use 90% of the force of the wind during transatlantic races. The 3.000 square metre of sail hoisted on masts over 50 meters long, combined with a design that has been studied with this in mind, will enable this objective to be achieved. The cargo sailboat should reach America in 15 days at an average speed of 13 to 14 knots. “This journey time is surprisingly faster than that of a container ship, which loses a lot of time in transhipments,” explains Guillaume.

On board, TOWT plans to carry more than 1,000 tonnes of freight in its 6 dedicated holds, on each rotation between Le Havre and America. A real technological and environmental challenge awaits the shipping company.

Among the goods imported or exported by the company are Belco, Europe’s leading importer of sustainable coffee; Pernod Ricard, Martell Mumm Perrier Jouet, etc. Requests come mainly from companies that already have a strong commitment to the environment. Spirits, wine and coffee are the most popular sectors. This mode of transport is also inevitably a marketing asset for partner companies. It will also be possible to take a dozen passengers on board.

As a reminder, Carenco, manager and operator of the port of Concarneau, CRN handles the various manoeuvres of the cargo ship ANEMOS according to the stages of construction. Arriving by sea at the end of August, the hull was moored for a few days before being put out to dry using the boat lift. After five months of work at the Ship Repair Area, ANEMOS was relaunched in February for her final phase of construction. Moored on the left bank for rigging, the ship was moved a few days ago to the right bank. She should remain there until her delivery next June.