Photo: Tallink Grupp

Keel laid for Tallink’s LNG-powered shuttle ferry

The keel-laying ceremony for MyStar, an eco-friendly LNG-powered shuttle ferry owned by Estonian shipping company Tallink Grupp, was held today at the Rauma Marine Constructions (RMC) shipyard in Rauma, Finland.

Image Courtesy: Tallink Grupp

The traditional keel-laying event – in keeping with the global coronavirus pandemic and the current precautionary measures — has been live-streamed from Rauma with Tallink Grupp’s representatives participating via the internet.

The construction of the 50,000 GT fast ferry MyStar began on 6 April this year, and the delivery of the vessel is planned for January 2022.

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The newbuild will feature a length of 212 metres, a width of 30.6 metres and will be able to reach a maximum speed of 27 knots. It will be able to accommodate 2,800 passengers and up to 750 vehicles.

Upon completion and delivery in January 2022, MyStar will operate on the company’s Tallinn-Helsinki route, connecting the twin capitals of Estonia and Finland.

MyStar is said to be another important step for Tallink Grupp towards achieving greater energy efficiency and eco-friendliness for its shipping operations on the Baltic Sea. The LNG-powered new shuttle vessel comes with the latest technology and innovation onboard and will meet all the current and known future emission regulations.

Laying down the keel is an important milestone in shipbuilding, often considered the birth of the ship. During the event, the first keel-block of MyStar, weighing approximately 270 tonnes, is laid into Rauma shipyard’s dry dock. Traditionally, lucky coins are placed under the keel during the event, which this time include both Estonian and Finnish Euro coins.

Commenting on the MyStar keel-laying, the CEO of Tallink Grupp, Paavo Nõgene, said:

„It is extremely important to keep our sights both on the near as well as the more distant future right now and continue with key projects that will ensure shipping is greener, more efficient and increasingly sustainable in the future.“

Jyrki Heinimaa, President and CEO of RMC, added:

“Despite the challenging economic situation and the global coronavirus pandemic, we are pleased that the MyStar production is continuing in Rauma shipyard as planned and the shipbuilding project will provide over 1,500 person-years of employment for the Rauma shipyard.”

“The delivery of the main equipment of MyStar is proceeding according to schedule. During the summer the vessel’s main engines were tested, with tests completed on the generators this autumn.” 

“Although the final impacts of the pandemic on the operations of the shipyard are yet to be seen, we are confident that operations will continue on track due to all the health and safety measures we have undertaken.”

Image Courtesy: Tallink Grupp

MyStar will be built with shore-to-ship green power equipment as well as the Smart Car Deck solution, developed in cooperation with Tallinn Technical University (TalTech), which will enable even faster and more convenient loading and unloading of the vessel and is compatible with the already existing Smart Port solution at the Port of Tallinn.

Following the keel laying, the next big milestone — launching and christening of the vessel — will take place in the summer of 2021.