Finnlines splashes 2nd Superstar ferry
Finnlines’ second Superstar vessel Finncanopus was launched at the China Merchants Jinling Shipyard in Weihai on 30 December, the company announced.
The first, Finnsirius, was launched in August 2022 and the keel laying of the second one was celebrated on 1 September 2022. The company ordered the ships back in 2020 from China Merchants Jinling Shipyard (Weihai), previously known as AVIC Weihai.
The new Superstar class cargo-passenger vessels are set to enter the market in 2023. Once delivered, they will serve the Naantali–Långnäs–Kapellskär route between Finland, Åland Islands, and Sweden.
“Regular and reliable freight traffic in the Baltic Sea is the backbone of the region’s economies and national security of supply. The maritime bridge between Finland and Sweden is one of the three connections in Finland important to trade and industry. Around 90 per cent of the Finnish and Swedish exports and imports are carried seaways. Our service has been very important for our customers. Increasing cargo and passenger capacity and improving passenger comfort on the route will strengthen the service,” says Tom Pippingsköld, President and CEO of Finnlines.
The Superstar vessels will be equipped air lubrication system that creates air bubbles, which reduce friction and hydrodynamic resistance.
They will also be fitted with onshore power supply systems which will provide an alternative source of energy to auxiliary engines, thus reducing emissions and noise. A high-powered battery bank will be charged in port and generate power at sea. They will also have two-speed reduction gears which will improve propulsion efficiency and save fuel, the shipowner said.
As informed, environmentally friendly oils will be used in bow thrusters, fin stabilizers and in the cargo access equipment.
“Innovative technologies will ensure that people and goods are transported reliably and sustainably and Finnlines is prepared to comply with new regulations and meet new challenges,” says Pippingsköld.
Both vessels have the capacity for 1,100 passengers, which is double compared with the current vessels on the route. Freight capacity will also increase from around 4,000 lane metres to 5,200. The new ro-pax vessels are part of Finnlines’ EUR 500-million investment programme, which also includes three hybrid roll-on/roll-off (RoRo) vessels.