Photo: Image Courtesy: Karsten Bidstrup/Hurtigruten

MS Roald Amundsen First Hybrid-Powered Ship to Complete Northwest Passage

Hurtigruten’s newest expedition cruise ship MS Roald Amundsen made history this week after becoming the first battery-hybrid powered ship to conclude the Northwest Passage.

The Norwegian cruise operator’s ship sailed over 3,000 nautical miles passage from the Atlantic to the Pacific to achieve the milestone.

Having traversed the Northwest Passage, the ship will sail further along the coast of North- and South America, before spending the winter offering expedition cruises in Antarctica.

MS Roald Amundsen is scheduled to return to North America in the summer of 2020, for a series of expedition cruises in Alaska.

MS Roald Amundsen is the first of three 15,000-ton hybrid-powered vessels ordered by Hurtigruten. The second unit, MS Fridtjof Nansen, is scheduled for delivery in 2020, while the yet-to-be-named third ship is expected to be delivered in 2021.

Accommodating 530 passengers, the ships are custom built for the Arctic’s extreme conditions, with specially designed, ice-strengthened hulls.

In addition to ordering hybrid-powered newbuilds, the expedition cruise operator is also transforming vessels currently in operation into hybrid-powered cruise ships.

As earlier announced by the company, the current MS Trollfjord, MS Finnmarken and MS Midnatsol will be equipped with battery packs and other green technology. The trio will operate year-round expedition cruises along the Norwegian coast from 2021 on yet-to-be-disclosed itineraries.