Wasaline launch confirms growing ferry preference for ABB’s Azipod® electric propulsion
The new ferry, launched by the Finnish shipyard Rauma Marine Constructions, will be operated by Wasaline on the world’s northernmost all-year passenger route between Vaasa in Finland and Umeå in Sweden. Entering service in 2021, Aurora Botnia will have the capacity to transport 800 passengers and up to 1,500 lane meters of trucks and cars, completing two round trips per day in high season.
Dubbed one of the world’s most environmentally passenger friendly ferries, the 150-meter vessel is equipped with the ice-class Azipod® electric propulsion to ensure the most efficient and sustainable operation in any conditions.
“We chose ABB’s Azipod® electric propulsion for several reasons,” said Peter Ståhlberg, Wasaline CEO. “Superior maneuverability will save time and increase productivity, enabling precise schedules to be maintained on this route. We calculated likely annual time savings of close to four days of operation, which was compelling. The solution also saves valuable space on board and simplifies hull construction. Access to ABB’s training and support services in Finland were other major plus points.”
The innovative Azipod® electric propulsion system was delivered to the shipyard fully engineered and ready for immediate installation. It has been installed on the newbuild ferry by yard while supervised by the local ABB Marine & Ports commissioning team according to schedule, successfully gaining acceptance by yard, owner, and classification society.
Johanna Kaijo, Rauma Marine Constructions’ Project Manager in charge of the project, noted ease of installation as a key benefit. “We were able to install the Azipod® units in just one week. For us as a shipbuilder, this translates into significant project flexibility by helping to optimize time and resources,” she said. “Having fully engineered units has notably improved the completion of the vessel construction – the installation was literally about plugging the ready-made units into the vessel hull.”
The new vessel will run on low-emission liquefied natural gas and will benefit from greater environmental and efficiency gains due to the selection of ABB Azipod® propulsion with permanent magnet motor technology. Designed to meet Polar Code 6 criteria, the vessel’s pair of 5.8MW Azipod® units wherethe electric drive motor in a submerged pod outside the ship’s hull, can rotate through 360 degrees thereby increasing maneuverability. In addition to its proven ability to cut fuel consumption by up to 20 percent compared to traditional propulsion, Azipod® technology also improves the onboard experience for passengers and crew through its quiet-running and vibration-free operation.
“Azipod® propulsion is now a well-proven, sustainable and efficient solution for ferries,” said Juha Koskela, Division President, ABB Marine & Ports. “We are delighted that Wasaline have chosen our sector-leading technology for this high-profile Baltic project. Once more, this is an order that highlights our leading position in passenger ship propulsion.”
ABB Marine & Ports supplies world-leading technologies that are driving the evolution of sustainable shipping. Electrical propulsion, data-driven decision support and integrated solutions for ship and shore from ABB are paving the way to a zero-emission marine industry, providing greater efficiency and reliability to shipowners, and preparing vessels to meet the demands of tomorrow. Our automation and electrical solutions are making port and terminal operations safer, greener and more productive. ABB Marine & Ports operates in 26 countries and has 2,000 employees. www.abb.com/marine
ABB (ABBN: SIX Swiss Ex) is a leading global technology company that energizes the transformation of society and industry to achieve a more productive, sustainable future. By connecting software to its electrification, robotics, automation and motion portfolio, ABB pushes the boundaries of technology to drive performance to new levels. With a history of excellence stretching back more than 130 years, ABB’s success is driven by about 110,000 talented employees in over 100 countries. www.abb.com