Kongsberg Maritime has signed a €12m contract with China Merchants Jinling Shipyard (Weihai) to deliver a propulsion and manoeuvring system for two RoPax vessels for Finnlines.

Shipbuilding in Weihai Photo: Kongsberg Maritime

Shipbuilding in Weihai Photo: Kongsberg Maritime

Currently under construction at Weihai and expected to be delivered for use in the Baltic Sea by 2023, the 230 metre long ‘Superstar’ ferries will each have capacity for 1,212 passengers and are specified with a focus on sustainable technologies and green operation.

Egil Haugsdal, president of Kongsberg Maritime, said, “This is a major contract and a key endorsement of our propulsion, manoeuvring and automation systems, of which we are justly proud. We have developed strategies to improve energy efficiency, thereby saving fuel and reducing emissions.”

The ships will be built to Swedish/Finnish ice class (1A Super) with a twin shaft line propulsion system powered by four main engines. Kongsberg Maritime has proposed a system whereby the ships will be able to run two efficiency/speed profiles – 16 knots with two engines running or 19 knots with four engines running. This capability is enabled via a two-speed gearbox solution, delivering a propulsion efficiency increase of around 3% compared with a single-speed gearbox.

Efficiency is further boosted through the use of Kongsberg’s Controllable Pitch Propellers which optimise hydrodynamic performance, increasing thrust and reducing drag. Combined with a ‘twisted’ rudder design that further improves manoeuvrability, twin-screw vessels can be expected to achieve efficiency gains of up to 6%.