Worldsport

Return to golden age of sail

Updated 7:00 AM ET, Fri October 12, 2012
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The 19th century "Golden Age of Sail" could be experiencing a revival. Modern-day cargo ship, Tres Hombres (pictured), is relying solely on wind power for its eight-month voyage to the Caribbean. Courtesy Fair Transport
The carbon-neutral vessel is named in honor of the three Dutch captains who founded the ambitious scheme -- Arjen van der Veen, Andreas Lackner and Jorne Langelaan. Berber van Beek, Fair Transport
The merchant ship Challenger, pictured in Bermuda in 1865. Spices, tea and chocolate from across the globe were delivered in ever increasing quantities to the dining tables of Europe, as the ships became larger and more efficient. Getty Images
One of the best known trading companies of the era was Britain's East India Company. This historic painting depicts the company's Captain Henry Wilson shipwrecked on the Pelew Islands, later the Republic of Palau, around 1783. Getty Images
Today, around 90% of world trade is currently carried by the shipping industry, contributing to 4% of global carbon emissions. Getty Images
Tres Hombres managing company, Fair Transport, also hopes to build a 136-meter cargo ship which would use at least 50% wind power. A diesel and electric motor would provide power in less windy conditions. Courtesy Fair Transport
British wind power company B9 recently tested a model of its 100-meter, 3,000-ton carbon-neutral freighter. The ship would use 60% wind power, relying on three computer-operated masts rising 55-meters. Courtesy B9