JANUARY 23, 2015 — ABB's marine business has seen record levels of new orders, driven by solid growth in demand for electrical propulsion systems especially in the cruise and ice-going segments.
In 2014, the company won orders worth $ 200 million to deliver power plants and Azipod propulsion systems to cruise customers and worth $ 900 million to deliver solutions to icegoing and icebreaking projects.
ABB says that the cruise market, where electric podded propulsion is the preferred propulsion type, has seen a significant growth in recent years especially in emerging markets. During 2014, ABB secured a number of orders with leading shipyards to deliver latest generation Azipod XO propulsion systems to high-end cruise vessels. In addition to repeat orders from longstanding customers, ABB won strategically important contracts to supply Azipod propulsion units to new customers.
Arctic shipping volumes and oil and gas exploration in the Arctic area have reached record level, creating the need for specialized solutions for icegoing and icebreaking vessels. In Arctic conditions, Azipod VI propulsion units optimize vessel efficiency and maneuverability while providing a high level of reliability for operations in the harsh and demanding conditions.
"ABB developed the Azipod electrical propulsion system to deliver tangible benefits to shipowners and operators: To improve the overall efficiency of ships while also reducing the carbon footprint and providing better maneuverability compared to conventional propulsion solutions. This explains why ABB has become the leader in electric propulsion and continues to harvest from increased demand across several vessel segments, cruise and arctic shipping in particular," says Heikki Soljama, Managing Director of ABB's Marine and Ports business. "While being a record year for Azipod sales, 2014 also marked another year of significant growth for diesel-electric propulsion. The tangible benefits of electric propulsion explain why during the last decade, the electric fleet has seen annual growth of 13%.""