August 3, 2007
Incat delivers 112 m cat
Incat has delivered the largest catamaran ever built in Australia, the 112 meter wave piercer Natchan Rera to Japan's Higashi Nihon Ferry.
Specifically designed and built to meet the requirements of Higashi Nihon Ferry, the Natchan Rera (Incat Hull 064) is well equipped to handle the demands of a providing a ferry service between the islands of Honshu and Hokkaido.
"Construction of the world's largest, most fuel efficient diesel-powered high speed catamaran is a proud moment for all Incat staff," said Incat Chairman Robert Clifford. "These vessels are set to revolutionize the Japanese ferry industry."
The order for the Natchan Rera, and a sister to follow next year, is a major part of the on-going Higashi Nihon Ferry business development plan for the expansion of regular passenger services across Tsugaru Strait between the ports of Hakodate on the island of Hokkaido and Aomori on the island of Honshu. The vehicle-passenger ferry will approximately halve the time currently taken for voyages between Aomori and Hakodate by the existing ships.
Higashi Nihon Ferry Chief Executive Shinji Koga comments, "We gained confidence in high speed ferries after a research visit to Europe in the autumn of 2005. As a result of our visit, during which we were impressed by the Incat 91 m ferry sailing with Mols-Linien in Denmark and the 98 m ferry sailing on the English Channel with Brittany Ferries, we were convinced to introduce a high speed ferry on the route between Hakodate and Aomori."
"Several shipyards contacted us intensively but we nominated Incat without any hesitation," he said..
In 1998 Incat conceived that a larger wave piercing catamaran was required to fill a market niche for a larger high speed ferry. After several years of research the 112 m design emerged.
The Natchan Rera is a result of that research. Ordered in May 2006 itwill operate at speeds of approximately 40 knots while offering capacity for up to 355 cars or 450 lane meters of trucks and 193 cars. While Incat's 112 m design can accommodate up to 1,500 people the Natchan Rera's accommodations cater for 800 passengers to high levels of luxury and comfort.
The Natchan Rera is powered by four MAN 20V 28/33D diesel engines, each rated at 9,000 kW at 1,000 rpm and delivering a low weight compared to other engines in its class.
Incat says the engines offer impressive fuel economy. The ship will burn a very frugal 120 grams of fuel for every tonne of cargo per mile traveled—-less fuel per cargo tonne per hour than any other high speed catamaran. e travelled.
The vessel is also environmentally compliant with low NOx emissions of <10g/kwh.