Innovative ferry concepts unveiled

13 Apr 2011
Three very dissimilar IMC ferries, however all based on one parametric design model. Freedom of choice includes fuel options such as LNG, to comply with future emission rules

Three very dissimilar IMC ferries, however all based on one parametric design model

Wartsila Ship Power and Deltamarin have unveiled the result of their cooperation, announced in October 2010, in the development of a series of innovative ferry designs.

The companies say that the IMC (integrated modular customised) ferry trio is now ready for introduction to the market, and will now undergo extensive model testing. The aim is to achieve considerable cost savings, both in building the ships and in operating them. At the same time, the latest environmental technology will be employed to meet current and future regulations.

Wärtsilä says that ferries have traditionally been expensive to build for a number of reasons, but primarily because each ship is custom designed, and ferries represent less than 1% of the world's shipping fleet. Similarly, operational costs tend to be high because of the regional and seasonal nature of the business, and as a result of port and weather restrictions.

The IMC designs will be prepared for conventional as well as future fuels, including LNG. Every effort is being made to achieve the lowest possible building costs. The IMC concept is intended to meet the demands of the ferry industry, which include the need to lower newbuilding costs; the need for optimised designs, especially for smaller ro-pax ferries, lower emissions, improved performance, and simplified maintenance.

The company says that a notable strength of the IMC ferry designs is that they can be readily adapted to changes and developments requested by the owner. The parametric approach makes it possible to demonstrate design changes immediately, and the design can be re-optimised in order to comply with regulations, achieve best fuel consumption and record good overall performance. This, says Wärtsilä,  has not been possible with earlier design methods without increasing the costs. Deltamarin's contracting services will support owners and shipyards during construction, as necessary.

Deltamarin developed the ‘parametric design’ method for ships, which splits the design into pure cost elements and revenue generating aspects. This opens the possibility for modularisation of construction, machinery, large equipment and onboard systems, and presents considerable newbuilding cost savings, and simplified maintenance of the ship.

"The value of this IMC integrated project is in the fully optimised solution that we can offer to ferry owners and operators. Both Deltamarin and Wärtsilä are contributing the best elements of their know-how and capabilities in a unique approach that provides a distinct competitive edge. A world-class ferry designer such as Deltamarin is an outstanding partner for us in fulfilling our goal of offering totally integrated solutions to this market," says Aaron Bresnahan, vice president, cruise & ferry segment, Wärtsilä Ship Power.

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Wartsila Corporation

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