Batteries: A landmark year

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2018 is the year that alternative energy use within the passenger ship sector became mainstream.

Norway’s environmental legislation is spearheading the drive towards electric hybrid and battery-power in the ferry sector. Earlier this year the Norwegian Parliament adopted a resolution to halt emissions from cruise ships and ferries in the Norwegian world heritage fjords as soon as technically possible, and no later than 2026. This is resulting in a move towards battery and hybrid diesel-electric power as a standard means of propulsion.

But as global environmental maritime regulations become stricter, 2018 signifies a prominent move towards battery use in ferries operating outside of Norway. Examples include Wightlink’s hybrid battery-powered Victoria of Wight and two battery hybrid ferries built by Remontowa for Transport for London, both delivered this year.

2018 was the year hybrid electric and full battery power came into their own throughout the ferry sector.

Its increased use is highlighted by The Fjords’ all-electric Future of the Fjords, which won Ship of the Year at SMM 2018.

This ship stands out as it highlights a move from dual-fuel battery power to being a fully electric and zero-emissions vessel. This can be seen in The Fjords’ own fleet, as first-in-class Vision of the Fjords was dual fuel – and following Future of the Fjords, the Norwegian ferry operator announced in Q4 2018 that it was building another fully electric ferry – Legacy of the Fjords.

The environmental and energy efficiency benefits reaped from this type of propulsion suggests this is a trend that will only strengthen.