Singapore-based PSA Marine and the technology group Wärtsilä have joined forces to co-create smart technologies for the marine sector. A Letter of Intent was signed on November 14 as part of the events celebrating the anniversary of the opening of the Wärtsilä Acceleration Centre in Singapore.
The center provides facilities for testing integrated technologies in close cooperation with customers and end-users in a co-creative and collaborative environment. The lab also enables potential technological and holistic solutions that address the needs and challenges faced by customers, to be jointly explored.
“The Acceleration Centre promotes innovation and joint projects with qualified partners in support of Wärtsilä’s ambition of a smart marine ecosystem that will deliver huge advances in efficiency, safety and environmental performance,” said Mervin Ong, managing director, Wärtsilä Singapore.
Wärtsilä’s single-source capability has resulted in a major new order for the technology group. A comprehensive package of its industry-leading portfolio of products, systems and integrated solutions will be featured on two new RoPax ferries being built at the Guangzhou Shipyard International yard in China. The order was placed in October 2019, and there are options for an additional two vessels.
The order includes four Wärtsilä 46 main engines, four Wärtsilä 20 auxiliary engines, and two hybrid V-SOx exhaust gas cleaning systems for each vessel, and the total order value amounts to around €30m (US$33m).
“This is a very significant contract that once again emphasizes Wärtsilä’s leading position as a total solutions provider to the cruise and ferry sector,” said Stefan Nysjö, vice president, Marine Power Solutions, Wärtsilä Marine.
Electric boats specialist Grove Boats has supplied a ferry currently operating on the River Seine at Rouen, France, in order to assess whether a permanent service would be a viable alternative to building a new bridge.
The 16m-long solar-powered catamaran – named Felix de Azara – is powered by a pair of 8kW electric motors whose electricity comes from 50m2 of solar panels mounted on the roof. The boat has a capacity of 60 people and is primarily aimed at providing a commuter service across the river. The crossing across takes six to seven minutes.
Transdev Mobility, an international company that manages a large number of ferries, river shuttles and other marine transit options across five countries, is coordinating the operation and the scheduling of the service.
BC Ferries (British Columbia Ferry Services), the Canadian ferry owner and operator, has ordered additional electric-battery hybrid vessels from Damen Shipyards Group.
The Dutch shipyard was awarded the contract to build the four Island Class vessels at a cost of US$200m, including financing and project management.
“These next four Island Class ships are a major step in our plan to progressively lower emissions across the fleet and be a leader in the energy transition to a lower carbon future,” said Capt. Jamie Marshall, BC Ferries’ vice president, business development and innovation. “Our Clean Futures Plan spells out our strategy to reduce GHG emissions by replacing our legacy carbon-intensive fossil-fueled vessels with ships using clean energy.”
The Island Class is a battery-powered ferry and it is BC Ferries’ intention to operate these new ships as all-electric ferries when electric charging technology matures to make electricity available in the quantities required.
Indonesia’s state-owned port operator Pelabuhan Indonesia III (Pelindo III) has announced a plan to install shore power at all of its ports by the end of 2020.
The operator has already spent US$5m on installing shore power at 13 of its ports and terminals, with a further 30 installations required to meet the target.
Shore power enables vessels to plug in to the electricity grid when berthed, allowing engines to be switched off while providing power to critical functions. This method will also reduce the total emissions output of the company, particularly if the power comes from renewable sources.
UK Chamber of Shipping chief executive Bob Sanguinetti called for greater efforts in tackling climate change during a visit to Wightlink in Portsmouth, which operates a hybrid ferry in the Solent.
The Victoria of Wight entered service in August 2018 as the first hybrid ferry in England, and its hybrid system allows it to operate on electric power during certain conditions. Fuel savings of 17% have been recorded in comparison to the St Clare, the next-largest ship operating the same route.
Bob Sanguinetti commented, “At the UK Chamber of Shipping we are determined to do all we can to help tackle climate change.
A Canadian Electric Boat Company Volt 180 craft has reached 30mph (26kts) and set a new record at the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout races in Missouri, USA.
Powered by a Torqeedo Deep Blue 80 outboard and a 30kW battery from a BMW i3, the Volt 180 was piloted by Randy Vance and won the MV1E1 class for electric boats, improving on last year’s record by 5mph that was also set using a Torqeedo power unit. The Volt is 5.5m long and has a beam of 2.13m, making it large enough to carry 11 passengers.
The shootout first took place in 1988 as an informal event between local boat owners, but now sees more than 70,000 spectators over the weekend.
Lake Geneva has added another solar boat to its electric fleet, with the Solar Boat Greta joining two similar vessels already in operation.
The Solar Boat Greta is an Aquabus 1050 made by Grove Boats, with 9m2 of PV cells providing more than 1.5kW of power. The 10.5m craft has space for 24 passengers, and the 8kW motor gives it a cruising speed of around 10km/h (6mph). The waterbus takes visitors to the Jet d’Eau fountain, one of Geneva’s most famous landmarks.
Grove Boats also supplied the city with two other solar boats working on Lake Geneva, operated by Les Aquarels du Lémans and Le Foué by hélionaute.