Scottish ferry operators pick Rolls-Royce thrusters

Written by Nick Blenkey

Rolls Royce ThrusterAUGUST 17, 2012 — Rolls-Royce has won contracts to supply thrusters for two Scottish operators, Western Ferries and Orkney Ferries.

Western Ferries recently announced the construction of two new ferries. They are being built by Cammell Laird Shiprepaires and Shipbuilders in Birkenhead, England, and will be larger, faster and more fuel efficient than the vessels they replace.

The 50 m double ended car ferries will operate on the Dunoon to Gourock route, across the Firth of Clyde. Each will be equipped with a pair of Rolls-Royce Aquamaster US 105 CRP thrusters, which rotate through 360 degrees and are particularly suited to the quick turn-round operations of these vessels.

Graeme Fletcher, Technical Director at Western Ferries, said, “Previous experience of these thrusters has shown them to be unsurpassed in tractability and efficiency. They will provide our skippers with outstanding control and maneuvering characteristics that cannot be achieved by other designs. Our customers and staff will appreciate the enhanced quality and safety provided by these new vessels on our busy route.”

Rob McBurney, Commercial Director – Cammell Laird said, “machinery selection for these new ferries was a joint effort and the Rolls-Royce thrusters were chosen because of the good operating experience, improved fuel consumption and maneuverability achieved on Western Ferries’ existing vessels Sound of Shuna and Sound of Scarba.”

The MV Hoy Head, operated by Orkney Ferries, is also to be equipped with Rolls-Royce thrusters. They are being installed as part of a major refit also taking place at the Cammell Laird shipyard. The work will involve updating and lengthening the ship to increase vehicle capacity and the installation of a new propulsion system.

James Stockan, Chair of the Orkney Islands Council’s Development and Infrastructure Committee, said: “It has been a long term aspiration of the Council to meet increasing demands on our South Isles ferry service, by alleviating congestion and providing increased opportunity to travel at the most convenient times.”

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