Wärtsilä to design and equip advanced polar transport

The advanced Aker BioMarine support vessel is designed for operation in Antarctic waters The advanced Aker BioMarine support vessel is designed for operation in Antarctic waters
Industry Database

Technology group Wärtsilä is to design and equip an advanced polar multipurpose transport vessel for Norway-based Aker BioMarine. The vessel, which is designed for operation in Antarctic waters, will be constructed at CIMC Raffles' shipyard in Shandong province, China. As part of the contract, Wärtsilä will supply a package of integrated propulsion and hybrid solutions for the vessel.

The 168 metre-long, 20,300-dwt vessel will comply with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) Polar Code. Because it will operate in the environmentally sensitive Antarctic, Wärtsilä’s sustainable technical and hybrid solutions, with high levels of safety and reliability, were considered as being the most suitable for this project.

“Protection of the environment is an absolute essential for us, and the design of this vessel has sustainability as a primary focus. 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,” says Eldar Vindvik, Director Fleet Renewal at Aker BioMarine.

The new vessel will be powered by Wärtsilä’s highly efficient Wärtsilä 31 engine, while two Wärtsilä 20 GenSets will provide auxiliary power. The engines will all 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. To ensure optimal system performance and energy utilisation, the integrated solution is controlled by Wärtsilä’s power and energy management system and propulsion control. A Wärtsilä Nacos Platinum Joystick system will be supplied to enhance the efficiency and safety of the ship’s operations.

The ship design order with Wärtsilä was booked in December 2018, while the order for the integrated solutions package was booked in March 2019.

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.

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