Wärtsilä announced it has been awarded the contract to design an advanced multipurpose transport vessel that will operate in Antarctic waters. As part of the contract, the company will supply integrated propulsion and hybrid solutions to ensure highly efficient and environmentally sustainable operations.
The ship has been ordered by Norway-based Aker BioMarine and will be constructed in China, at CIMC Raffles. The ship design order with Wärtsilä was booked in last December, while the order for the integrated solutions package came this month.
“Protection of the environment is an absolute essential for us, and the design of this vessel has sustainability as a primary focus,” said Eldar Vindvik, director Fleet Renewal at Aker BioMarine. “It incorporates the latest energy saving and environmentally friendly technologies, such as the hybrid propulsion system and an advanced heat recovery system that helps to reduce the carbon footprint even further.”
The 168 m, 20,300 dwt vessel will comply with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) Polar Code, Wärtsilä said. Because it will operate in the environmentally sensitive Antarctic, Wärtsilä’s technical and hybrid solutions were considered as being the most suitable for this project.
“We are proud to have been selected to design and equip this ship,” said Lilli Chi, managing director, Ship Design at Wärtsilä Marine. “It will be a customized vessel designed specifically to meet the ownerâ€™s operational requirements in a challenging environment.”
The new vessel will be powered by a Wärtsilä 31 engine, with two Wärtsilä 20 engines providing auxiliary power. The Wärtsilä 31 propulsion engine is a vee-configuration, eight-cylinder engine with a bore and stroke of 310 x 430 mm and a per-cylinder output of 610 kW/cylinder. It generates 4.88 MW at 750 rpm. All of the engines will be fitted with Wärtsilä’s NOx Reducer (NOR) to prevent nitrogen oxide emissions when in diesel mode.
Wärtsilä will also deliver the power distribution system, including hybrid drives and a battery package, the gearbox, controllable pitch propeller and thrusters. A Wärtsilä Nacos Platinum Joystick system will be supplied for maneuvering and the integrated solution is controlled by Wärtsilä’s power and energy management system and propulsion control.
The ship will carry supply goods and liquids, as well as krill products from krill harvesting vessels working in the Antarctic area. For this, an innovative cargo handling system has been developed.
The vessel is expected to be ready for the 2021 harvesting season.