Photo: Isle of Man Ship Registry

New Isle of Man ferry to feature Wärtsilä’s hybrid solution

Finnish technology group Wärtsilä has been selected to supply a range of solutions for a new diesel-electric hybrid roll-on/roll-off passenger (RoPax) ferry ordered by the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company (IOMSPC).

The order with Wärtsilä was placed in the second quarter of 2020, the company said.

The 132-metre-long vessel is being built at Hyundai Mipo Dockyard in South Korea and will serve the Heysham to Douglas, Isle of Man route. Houlder, a London-based design & engineering consultancy, will act as a technical advisor in the design and build of the ship.

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Wärtsilä said it has worked closely with the owner to develop a customised integrated solution based on the ship’s operating profile and customer-specific requirements. Reliability, efficiency, and low operating costs were key considerations.

Central to the design is the Wärtsilä’s 4-stroke diesel engine that can utilise artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning in a condition-based maintenance regime.

“We have selected Wärtsilä as their solution brings notable advantages in terms of system integration and operational optimisation. It will also have the flexibility to take advantage of alternative future fuels as they become available,” Jim Royston, Fleet Operations and Project Manager at IOMSPC, commented.

“The Hybrid solution, combining highly efficient engines and energy storage, is increasingly being seen as a practical means for meeting today’s environmental and operating challenges. This solution lowers emission levels and extends the time between engine overhauls, and is an effective future-proof model for ship owners,” Karl Hinks, Sales Manager, Wärtsilä Marine Power, said.

Specifically, the Wärtsilä scope includes the Wärtsilä 31 engines, electrical and automation including Wärtsilä’s Low Loss Concept (LLC), the energy storage system, and propulsion machinery including the transverse thrusters. Wärtsilä will also supply the NACOS Platinum integrated navigation system along with a newly developed Bridge Console Design and its Aquarius UV Ballast Water Management system.

The equipment is scheduled for delivery to the yard during the latter part of 2021.

Construction at the South Korean yard is due to start in the middle of next year, with delivery scheduled for spring 2023.