MAN Diesel & Turbo to power Taiwan Ropax ferry

SEPTEMBER 13, 2012 — A Ropax ferry being built by Taiwan's Jade Shipbuilding for Lienchiang County Government is to be propelled by two 9L32/44CR four-stroke engines. The medium-speed engines will form part of a complete MAN Diesel & Turbo propulsion system that also includes reversible gearboxes, MAN Alpha twin-screw fixed-pitch propellers and a ship alarm system. MAN Diesel & Turbo will build the engines at its facility in Augsburg, Germany. Delivery of the propulsion system is scheduled for December 2012 with vessel delivery from the shipyard timed for January 2014.

The 106-m ferry will operate a six days a week service between Keelung and the Matsu islands and Lienchiang County set a number of key requirements for the propulsion system, including:  

  • two 3,450-mm diameter, 4-blade, fixed-pitch propellers, selected among other reasons because of the positive experience of local operators  
  • high torque at part-load and fast load response to optimize maneuverability
  • the lowest possible fuel consumption
  • no visible soot emissions while maneuvering in harbor
  • the lowest possible overall emissions.

MAN Diesel & Turbo says these requirements favored the adoption of common rail technology rather than conventional injection technology.

The fixed-pitch propeller transmits a power of 4,635 kW per engine and, as the highest propeller efficiency possible – balanced with low noise and vibration – were key factors, the MAN Alpha fixed-pitch propellers were a natural choice.

A water-lubricated stern tube arrangement was also selected to obtain the most environmentally friendly shafting solution.

For safety on board, MAN Diesel & Turbo also employed a ship alarm system that displays messages in traditional Chinese characters.