A new all-electric catamaran currently under construction by Maritime Partner will provide local passenger transportation in the Lofoten Islands, one of Norway’s foremost tourist destinations. It is expected that the new catamaran will reduce CO₂ emissions by 177 tonnes per year and save 56,000 liters of fuel over the existing diesel-powered vessel that it will replace.
ABB worked closely with Maritime Partner on the design and supply of the catamaran’s electric propulsion system to build a new vessel that is both emission-free and very quiet. Near-silent operation not only benefits passengers and crew with less noise but is also less disruptive to marine life.
“We collaborated with ABB because we knew they could supply a full electric powertrain tailored to match our catamaran design,” says Anders Bjørdal of Maritime Partner. “And the ABB team have the expertise to support us in making this exciting vessel a reality.”
Complete powertrain from a single source
The ABB solution includes two 126 kW AMXE200S liquid cooled e-mobility electric motors, two HES880 frequency converters, and two AC to DC OGC (optimal grid control) systems, which will control charging when the vessel is at shore and supply AC power to the hotel load and auxiliaries when sailing. The battery systems will have a total capacity of 525 kWh.
“ABB are very pleased that Maritime Partner selected our propulsion system for their first all-electric catamaran,” says Håvard Masdal of ABB Norway. “Our efficient solution comprises equipment that is compact and reliable with reduced maintenance needs. Also, our powertrain for this catamaran is designed with two completely independent power sources, which means that the vessel does not need an emergency generator.”
The new catamaran is scheduled to go into service in March, 2023. At 19.72 meters in length, it will carry 75 passengers with two crew members. The cruising speed will be 12 knots. In addition to its fully electric propulsion system, it will also feature a modern aluminum hull.
Once completed by Maritime Partner, the vessel will be operated by owner Moskenes Shipping from their base in Reine. It will serve several destinations on a route of some 12 nautical miles, with each round trip taking about one hour. It will provide a number of sailings each day, carrying both residents and visitors to the area.
The Lofoten Islands have been certified as a Sustainable Destination under Norway’s national labeling system. This is based on the work done by local organizations to systematically develop tourism in a sustainable manner. The new catamaran, which represents the cutting edge in sustainable marine transportation, is perfectly aligned with this initiative.
“It is essential that the marine industry rapidly reduces emissions and improves its sustainability. We firmly believe that electric propulsion is the future,” adds Lars-Fredrik Mathiesen of ABB Norway. “Our solutions are equally suitable for new vessels and for retrofitting in existing craft to realize the benefits of electric operation.”
Maritime Partner AS is based in Ålesund, around 370 km northwest of Oslo. Since started back in 1994, more than 2,200 craft has been supplied worldwide. They specialize in vessels from 5 to 25 meters in length, mostly constructed in recyclable aluminum.