GE inks gas turbine service contract for fastest ferry

Built by Australian shipbuilder Incat, Francis regularly attains service speeds of over 50 knots Built by Australian shipbuilder Incat, Francis regularly attains service speeds of over 50 knots

AUGUST 5, 2015 — GE Marine reports that it will provide Buquebus, Buenos Aires, Argentina, with a customized service agreement for the two GE LM2500 gas turbines that power the 99 m LNG fueled Incat fast ferry Francisco fast ferry.

On its speed trials in June 2013, the vessel attained a lightship speed of 58.1 knots (107.6 km/hr) to claim the title of "world's fastest ship."

The 10-year agreement provides for scheduled and unscheduled maintenance for the dual fuel gas turbines.

"We worked closely with Buquebus to fashion a gas turbine maintenance agreement that would meet their specific needs and ensure reliable operation of this very popular fast ferry," said Brien Bolsinger, Vice President, Marine Operations, GE Marine, Evendale, OH. "This tailored agreement ensures that this wave piercing catamaran continues to swiftly move thousands of passengers and cars on its River Plata crossing between Argentina and Uruguay."

Under the customized service contract with Buquebus, GE will provide for scheduled and unscheduled gas turbine maintenance, including:

  • Onsite and field service support
  • Select component repair and replacement
  • Engineering, technical and troubleshooting support
  • Engine leasing
  • In addition, any depot level work will be performed in Italy at Avio Aero's Brindisi facility. Avio Aero is a GE Aviation business.

The 1,516-tonne displacement catamaran can carry more than 1,000 passengers and 150 cars on each voyage. The two GE gas turbines enable the vessel to achieve speeds in excess of 50 knots during normal operation on LNG or Marine Gas Oil.

Francisco provides multiple options for traveling in style and comfort. Seating ranges from tourist class through to business and first class, including cafes and bars. In addition, Francisco's 11,840 sq ft duty-free shop is the largest shopping area ever installed on a fast ferry.

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