Stena Line: Keel laid for first methanol-ready NewMax hybrid ferry

Swedish ferry company Stena Line has held a keel-laying ceremony for its first methanol-ready NewMax hybrid ferry Stena Futura.

Stena Line

As disclosed, the event took place at China Merchants Jinling Shipyard in WeiHai, China, on June 28, 2024.

Besides being able to run on methanol, a priority during the construction of the vessels will be to provide built-in technologies that can take advantage of both battery propulsion and shore power, where this is available, according to Stena Line.

“We are dedicated to taking responsibility and to be part of the solution to climate change. Investing in new ships, prepared to run on alternative fuels as well as electricity, is an important part of our strategy of moving towards new sustainable fuels and setting new industry standards,” said Niclas Mårtensson, CEO Stena Line.

To remind, Stena Line ordered two new hybrid freight ferries for the Belfast-Heysham route on the Irish Sea. The steel-cutting ceremony for the first ferry was held in January this year. The ship is due to enter service in autumn 2025.

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The keel-laying of the second of the two NewMax vessels is planned for this fall and the name of that vessel is yet to be revealed. 

Stena Line is one of Europe’s leading ferry companies with approximately 40 vessels and 20 routes in Northern Europe and the Mediterranean.

The company recently joined forces with classification society Lloyd’s Register (LR) to retrofit two fast roll-on/roll-off (RoRo) vessels with methanol propulsion. The conversion will see the Stena Superfast VII and Stena Superfast VIII RoRo ferries, which operate on the Scotland to Northern Ireland route between Cairnryan and Belfast, converted to methanol dual-fuel propulsion with the vessels transferring class to LR.

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