The ocean seems the wrong element for a parachute to be used to propel a vessel, but a company called SkySails has a gigantic sail for cargo ships that aims to help reduce emissions and fuel costs for oceanic treks.
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The sail is very much like an oversized paraglider you would see sky divers using or parasailing. The version for big cargo ships is an amazing 190 square yards and the ship it will be pulling along is the 130-meter MV Beluga.The SkySail has been tested on smaller ships for several years but this is the first use on a large vessel. What is unclear to me is the method used to launch and recover the giant kite like sail, it seems that if it fell into the water during recovery it would be hard to retract. Story and image via News.com.
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by Shane McGlaun