The Helsinki based technology group Wärtsilä will supply the engines, the navigation system, and a broad scope of other products and systems for a luxury and environmentally friendly ferry being built for the Finland based operator, Viking Line. The ship is being built at the Xiamen Shipbuilding Industry yard in China and there is an option for a second vessel. The order with Wärtsilä was booked in October 2017.
Six Wärtsilä 31DF dual-fuel engines running primarily on liquefied natural gas (LNG) will provide the propulsion and power for the vessel. The diesel version of this same engine has been recognised by Guinness World Records as being the world's most efficient 4-stroke diesel engine. This will be the first marine application for the dual-fuel version. The combination of high efficiency, low fuel consumption, and the reduced level of exhaust emissions from operating on clean burning LNG, is expected to create low operating costs and a minimal environmental footprint.
Wärtsilä will also supply its LNGPac fuel storage and supply system and an advanced Compact Silencer System (CSS), high quality bow thrusters, the ballast water management system (BWMS), and its Nacos Platinum integrated navigation system. The Nacos Platinum system integrates various functions into a single system, allowing the vessel to be navigated, controlled, and monitored from several onboard positions, thus providing unequalled flexibility and convenience. The Wärtsilä BWMS is designed to render the ballast water discharge harmless of invasive species. Legislation making this compulsory came into effect in September 2017.
The recently launched Wärtsilä SmartPredict system is also included in the overall scope. This innovation is designed to provide ships with greater safety and more efficient operations by displaying the vessel's predicted future position and heading. It evaluates the wind and sea forces affecting the vessel to provide advanced motion prediction and has a configurable prediction time display.
"A new era in ferry operations was established in 2013 when Viking Line's 'Viking Grace' with Wärtsilä dual-fuel engines became the world's largest RoPax ferry to operate on LNG fuel. This latest Viking project represents another milestone as it will be the first vessel fitted with the highly efficient Wärtsilä 31DF engines. Both cases highlight the value our know-how and technology brings to our customers," says Roger Holm, President, Wärtsilä Marine Solutions.
"The value of operating with Wärtsilä engines fuelled by LNG has been well established through our experience with the 'Viking Grace'. Furthermore, the LNGPac fuel system provides the necessary safety and non-stop operation required, so we had no hesitation in once again specifying Wärtsilä for this project," says Jan Hanses, President and CEO, Viking Line.
Commencing in early 2021, the new vessel will operate across the Baltic Sea between Turku, Finland and Stockholm, Sweden. The ship is the first LNG fuelled ferry of this size and standard to be built in China.