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Future of the Fjords

The Fjords to build 'all electric' ship

OSLO, June 1, 2017

The Fjords, the operator of a fleet of seven tourism and transport vessels in Norway, has confirmed that it is building a sister ship to the striking diesel-electric plug-in hybrid Vision of the Fjords, launched in 2016.

However, unlike its predecessor, this 42m long carbon fibre vessel will be all electric and completely emission free, said a statement from company, part of The Fjord1 Group - a major transportation company in Norway.

The vessel, named Future of the Fjords, will be launched in April next year, it said.

Currently under construction at specialist shipbuilder Brødrene Aa, the new vessel retains the previous vessels’ ‘mountain path’ design and environmentally friendly build, with a hull that minimises wake and reduces shoreline impact erosion. It also offers up to 400 passengers the panoramic views of the Western Norwegian fjords.

Future of the Fjords will cost NOK144 million ($17 million), marking a significant increase over the ship’s NOK90 million ($10.06 million) price tag. Much of the extra investment is the result of opting for an all-electric solution, it added.

Rolf Sandvik, CEO, The Fjords, said: “Under the skin this new craft is a different beast.”

“Vision of the Fjords switches from diesel to electric power when entering the UNESCO World Heritage Listed Nærøyfjord,” he said.

“It represented an important step forward on our journey to transform tourism in this delicate natural wonderland, but this new ship is, quite simply, our dream come true. It marks the fulfilment of a vision,” he added.

Sandvik continued: “It not only provides an optimal passenger experience, with the only noise being the fjords’ natural soundtrack, but it also showcases a new, zero emissions way to enjoy and safeguard this fragile landscape.”

“The vessel will be totally different to anything else on the water, showing what can be achieved with the determination, investment and ambition to operate responsibly and sustainably. We want this to be a paradigm for the industry. We believe this really is the Future of the Fjords,” he added.

The new DNV GL classed ‘light craft’ will be propelled by two 300kW electric motors, enabling cruising speeds of 16 knots along the spectacular fjord route between Flåm and Gudvangen. Work to develop the charging infrastructure to enable its planned 700 trips a year is currently in the early stages, with local supplier Aurland Energiverk at the vanguard, said a statement.

Alongside the changes to the propulsion system, the new ship will boast upgraded IT systems, to ensure it meets the digital demands of tomorrow, and a refined restaurant and comfort levels, it said.

Sandvik said: “Responsible operation is one focus, the best possible passenger experience the other.”

He noted: “This is a ship that will draw people from around the world to experience the fjords in a manner that no other craft can emulate. It’s a trip of a lifetime and we want to make our passengers’ memories of their voyage as enjoyable as possible.”

“By introducing another vessel of this class we’re also able to expand the premium capacity on this special waterway. That leads to some economy of scale and will help keep ticket prices at very attractive levels,” he added.

“We, and our progressive owners Fjord1 and Flåm AS, are determined to make this as accessible as possible. We want everyone to have the opportunity to experience the Future of the Fjords,” he concluded. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: | ship | hybrid | plug |

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