German electronics and industrial con- glomerate Siemens has been commis-sioned to provide a complete electro-technical solution for a car ferry for Finnish sea and lake transport provider FinFerries.
FinFerries has ordered the new battery-powered car ferry build from the Polish shipyard CRIST S.A., which is scheduled for operation in mid-2017. The ferry will be environment-friendly and will improve the transport options between Nauvo and Parainen, in the Turku Archipelago, in Finland.
The ferry car will be about 90 m long and 16 m wide, with capacity for a maximum of 90 cars.
Siemens has confirmed that the ferry will be equipped with the company’s own electric propulsion system BlueDrive PlusC. It includes an energy storage system, variable speed drive technology for the propellers and an integrated alarm and monitoring system.
FinFerries will benefit from lower operational costs, maintenance and repair cost savings that the Siemens solution provides, while improved control and safety through the energy management and thruster control systems are also key features of the system. The complete electro-technical solution includes the remote access monitoring system EcoMain.
Siemens will also be supplying a WiFi solution to connect with the shore-based charging stations controlled by the ferry’s energy management system in order to secure automated fast charging.
The charging of the ship’s energy storage system is carried out at each side of the crossing, with a shore connection to the local grid.
Owing to the harsh winter conditions in Finland, the ferry will use a diesel engine to support the onboard batteries, which will serve as an extra boost when breaking and travelling through ice. The ferry will then be operated as a plug-in hybrid vehicle.The
Ampere, the world’s first battery-powered car ferry was put into operation in Norway in May last year and has travelled a distance equivalent to more than 1.5 times around the equator. The ferry uses only 150 kWh for each route. Norwegian ferry and express boat operators Norled have been operating the Ampere and have reported a reduction in fuel expenditure of 60% when changing from diesel propulsion to battery.
“Battery-powered ferries offer a great new way to provide sustainable, efficient and reliable water transportation. “As we have already proven, this project will be another milestone in environment-friendly technologies,” says Siemens process industries and drives division CEO Dr Juergen Brandes.
“We’ve chosen CRIST to deliver the vessel because of the competitive price and their ability to provide us with a vessel of excellent quality. Siemens will provide the new technology for the ship. It is a company that has plenty of experience and an excellent reputation with a similar application on the Norwegian ferry,” states FinFerries CEO Mats Rosin.