MAN Supplying Hybrid Solution For Ferries

By Jack Burke05 June 2019

The Damen Gorinchem Holland shipyard has ordered a hybrid-propulsion solution from MAN Energy Solutions for two dual-fuel/hybrid RoRo ferries for Seaspan Ferries Corp. of Canada.

The order covers the provision of MAN 35/44DF dual-fuel engines, fuel gas-supply systems and the main electric systems, including batteries.

MAN Energy Solutions will provide the solutions in association with Aspin Kemp & Associates (AKA), in which it has a 40% stake. AKA specializes in power supply, energy management and drive systems for marine and industrial applications.

Similarly, MAN Energy Solutions’ fuel-gas specialist, MAN Cryo, has been charged with supplying the new ferries’ fuel gas-supply system. MAN Cryo offers systems for the storage, distribution and handling of liquefied gases and was fully integrated into the company in 2015.

“We are very pleased to have won this order, and that our case was compelling enough for the customer to change an existing technical specification to our favor,” said Wayne Jones OBE, chief sales officer and member of the Executive Board, MAN Energy Solutions. “It really showcases our strategic direction of developing sustainable technologies and solutions, and how we have expanded our business in recent years. This is a move that is now paying off as evidenced by the key roles that AKA and MAN Cryo play in this significant order.”

Jason Aspin, CEO of Aspin Kemp & Associates, said the order represents a strategic milestone for AKA due to many factors.

“First off, it showcases the successful MAN and AKA partnership, offering highly innovative, full turn-key systems to operators,” Aspin said. “Secondly, it is a great opportunity for AKA’s technologies to be deployed in our backyard in Canada with a leading and forward-thinking owner like Seaspan. And lastly, with a technology where AKA has been a first mover in several initiatives for over a decade, this demonstrates that the marine industry is opening to the value that hybrid systems provide in meeting their environmental reduction targets while at the same time reducing their operating costs.”

Project background

MAN Energy Solutions’ scope of supply for each ship includes:

  • Two MAN 9L35/44DF Diesel/Gas-electric propulsion system. The L35/44DF engine comes in 6, 7, 9, 9 and 10 cylinder variants and has a bore and stroke of 350 X 440 mm. It offers 530 kW per cylinder at 750 rpm.
  • One MAN Cryo Fuel Gas Supply System including a 209m³ tank
  • One AKA main electrical system
  • One AKA 2-MWh energy storage systems
  • One AKA low voltage distribution system

 System characteristics

MAN said its hybrid-system solution, in combination with a fully integrated MAN Cryo FGSS, is adjusted to the engines gas-flow requirements, offers reliable operation in gas mode – especially in view of the ferry segment’s typical frequent and high load-fluctuations – and even with low methane numbers. For Seaspan, it was essential to avoid any diesel operation due to environmental and ecological reasons.

High system efficiency and the low emissions will also be achieved by having just one of two DF engines online at a time and at high load, the company said. Being able to operate with a one engine-online-concept facilitates significant savings in terms of vessels fuel costs, running hours and therefore spare parts/maintenance costs, the company said.

The propulsion and battery hybrid system, integrated by AKA, is designed to provide sufficient propulsion power in all operational modes.

Additional AKA hybrid features for this project include peak shaving under rough conditions and maneuvering, enhanced dynamic support during ship acceleration, and zero-emissions operation at the terminal.

The Maritime Energy Transition

The new Seaspan order is part of the ‘Maritime Energy Transition’, an umbrella term that covers all MAN Energy Solutions activities in regard to supporting a climate-neutral shipping industry.

The term stems from the German expression ‘Energiewende’ and encapsulates MAN Energy Solutions’ call to action to reduce emissions and, among other initiatives, establish natural gases as the fuels of choice in global shipping.

Launched in 2016 after COP 21, the initiative has since found broad support within the shipping industry and politics, according to the company.

About Seaspan Ferries

With over one hundred years of marine-transportation experience, Seaspan Ferries operates a ‘drop trailer’ service eliminating the costs associated with tractors and drivers accompanying trailers during transit to or from Vancouver Island.

Seaspan Ferries provides daily scheduled sailings through three roll-on/roll-off, self-propelled vessels, and four articulated tug-and-barge units.

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