The vessel is being constructed at the CMI Jinling Shipyard in China’s Weihai for StenaRoRo as part of the firm’s E-Flexer fleet.
Once completed, the ship will go on a 10-year time charter to the France-based ferry operator Brittany Ferries with Guillaume de Normandie, its sister vessel.
Saint-Malo, our first hybrid vessel, took to the sea for the first time last week 🛳️
The fourth vessel in our fleet renewal programme will be powered by cleaner LNG, by battery power or by a combination of the two. Saint-Malo will join our fleet in 2025#BrittanyFerries #BF50 pic.twitter.com/lF0ShxpQj9
— Brittany Ferries (@BrittanyFerries) October 13, 2023
The 194.7-meter-long E-Flexers are going to be operated on liquefied natural gas (LNG) fuel. But in a first on the English Channel, they will also operate completely or partially on battery power — for instance, when reaching and departing from ports.
Besides, they will also be prepared to plug into shore-side power when this becomes available at the ports. This will permit the recharging of batteries onboard and power for systems like heating, air conditioning, and lighting when at berth, bringing down funnel emissions to zero.
The fourth ship in the fleet renewal program will be enabled by cleaner LNG, battery power, or a combination of the two, Britany Ferries mentioned regarding the launch.
The vessel represents a crucial component of Brittany Ferries’ fleet renewal program, emphasising eco-friendly propulsion methodologies.
The firm has described it as the largest hybrid vessel boasting batteries with an estimated capacity of 11.5 MWh, which is double what is typically used for hybrid propulsion in marine vessels.
The batteries are now being offered by the Swiss energy storage solutions major named Leclanché.
The ship’s optimised hybrid power, energy efficiency, and shoreside plug-in can yield an improvement of up to 15% in greenhouse gas emissions compared to diesel propulsion – per the engine supplier Wärtsilä.
In the meantime, the Denmark-based independent LNG supplier Titan LNG has reportedly been contracted by the firm to offer LNG and liquified biomethane to the two new Ro-Pax ships.
Saint-Malo is reportedly destined for the St Malo – Portsmouth way and is scheduled for its delivery in 2025.
Shortly, Guillaume de Normandie will be a part of the fleet, running the firm’s most popular Caen-Portsmouth channel.
The building of the firm’s second hybrid vessel recently hit a milestone with the keel laying ceremony recently conducted at the yard.
The hybrids are expected to replace Bretagne and Normandie, two of the longest-serving vessels in their family.
References: offshore energy, India shipping news
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