DECEMBER 14, 2014 — Helgoland, Germany's first newbuild LNG fueled seagoing vessel was christened and made its maiden voyage December 11.
Built by the Fr. Fassmer shipyard, the 83 m x 12.6 m ferry has seating for 1,080 passengers and is powered by a complete Wärtsilä LNG propulsion solution.
Owned by Reederei Cassen Eils GmbH, it operates between Cuxhaven and the island of Helgoland. This route takes the vessel close to the UNESCO World Heritage listed Wadden Sea National Park, Because of the need to minimize exhaust gas emissions in this ecologically sensitive area, the ferry will operate primarily on LNG using two 9-cylinder Wärtsilä 20DF medium-speed dual-fuel engines.
"We are very proud to be operating the first newbuild German vessel fueled by LNG," says Dr. Bernhard Brons, Managing Director of Reederei Cassen Eils GmbH and CEO of its parent AG EMS.
"Compared to conventional diesel fuel, this ship will produce 20% less CO2, 90% less NOx, and almost zero SOx and particulates," says Dr. Brons. "Thanks to Wärtsilä's dual-fuel technology with built in redundancy, the vessel can operate efficiently and without restrictions in the Wadden Sea National Park. Furthermore, it was very important for us to select a reliable and experienced partner who was able to deliver a complete propulsion package."
In addition to the propulsion machinery comprised of the two engines, two gearboxes and two controllable pitch propellers, Wärtsilä has also supplied its LNGPac fuel bunkering and gas supply system with related safety and automation systems.The ship also uses Wärtsilä's patented Cold Recovery System, which utilizes the latent heat of LNG for the ship's air conditioning systems, reducing the amount of electricity consumed in cooling compressors. This provides significant operational savings and an increase in overall vessel efficiency, while adding to the environmental benefits of the Wärtsilä solution.
"This is a unique and very important maiden voyage that promotes responsible sustainability for shipping," says Matthias Becker, General Manager, Wärtsilä Marine Solutions in Germany. "We congratulate the owners for having the first virtually emissions free German passenger vessel in operation. Wärtsilä is proud to have supplied the integrated solutions package that has made this possible. This is one of the first installations anywhere in the world with Wärtsilä 20DF engines utilizing gas-mechanical direct propulsion, making it both environmentally sustainable and extremely efficient.
Reederei Cassen Eils is a member of the AG EMS group of companies. Wärtsilä earlier retrofitted the company's "Ostfriesland" car and passenger ferry for LNG operation. The retrofitted vessel had its maiden voyage on June 17.