Short sea shipping

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Short sea shipping

How can you ensure that the propulsion system on your short sea shipping vessel delivers reliability, high manoeuvrability and low or even zero-emission operation? Are you searching for a clear path towards efficient decarbonisation? A partner who can help you strike the perfect balance between performance and flexibility through optimal integration of each and every component can answer these key questions and more.

Whether you’re operating a short sea tanker, feeder or bulker, your vessel – and your business – can reap the rewards of a smart, modular hybrid propulsion system that can be tailored to your specific needs and vessel operating conditions. Our solutions can incorporate a fuel-flexible medium-speed main engine, a geared propeller system, a shaft motor/generator (PTO/PTI) and a battery-based Energy Storage System (ESS). All of these are optimised using an integrated energy management system (EMS).

Read on to learn how you can navigate the decarbonisation challenges ahead with a flexible, future-proof propulsion setup that aligns with your business strategy.

    Short sea tankers 

    Tanker vessels operating on short sea routes must typically meet a varied range of operational requirements. They may be chartered on short-term agreements with different voyage distances, load conditions and sailing speeds. Optimising vessel CAPEX and OPEX are crucial to securing profitability and competitiveness.

    Key considerations for short sea tankers

    • Variable cargo load conditions with substantially different propulsive power requirements.
    • Electric power demand during navigation can be important, for example on vessels that have to cool or heat their cargo.
    • Vessels which carry hazardous goods or pollutants are usually required to have backup steering and navigational systems in case of failure.
    • Vessels are often required to sail in restricted waters such as channels, emission control areas or close to urban areas, meaning they require a reliable propulsion system, effective steering and improved manoeuvrability.
    • Cargo operations may involve high electrical loads during cargo loading and unloading due to the use of ballast pumps to maintain vessel stability.

    Short sea feeders 

    Feeder vessels are typically small container vessels that transport containers from smaller hub ports to larger regional terminals. Compared to other vessel types in the short sea shipping sector feeders operate more predictable routes, matching the mainline traffic between the hubs they serve. Optimising OPEX is the key to profitable and competitive operations.

    Key considerations for short sea feeders

    • Individual voyage legs can differ significantly in terms of distances and sailing speeds, with electrical load conditions dependent on the number of reefers onboard.
    • Vessels are frequently required to sail in restricted waters such as channels, emission control areas or close to urban areas, meaning they require a reliable propulsion system, effective steering and improved manoeuvrability.
    • Cargo operations may involve variable electric loads during self-unloading, with instantaneous peaks substantially exceeding the average electric load in all other operating modes.

    Short sea bulker vessels 

    Short sea bulker vessels must typically meet a large range of operational requirements. They can be chartered on short-term agreements, with highly variable voyage distances, loading conditions and sailing speeds. Optimising vessel CAPEX and OPEX are crucial to securing profitability and competitiveness.

    Key considerations for short sea bulkers

    • Variable cargo load conditions with substantially different propulsive power requirements.
    • Vessels are often required to sail in restricted waters such as channels, emission control areas or close to urban areas, meaning they require a reliable propulsion system, effective steering and improved manoeuvrability.
    • Cargo operations may involve variable electrical loads during self-unloading, with instantaneous peaks substantially exceeding the average electrical load in all other operating modes.
    • Short Sea Shipping

      A Smart Propulsion System for short sea shipping vessels

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    Wärtsilä Smart Propulsion System

    A building block approach

    Reducing emissions and increasing operational flexibility are the main drivers behind the development of the Wärtsilä Smart Propulsion System. This highly adaptable, modular propulsion concept can be customised through a data-driven design process and offers advanced system functionalities that help you to address variable operation conditions.

    The hybrid system includes a fuel-flexible medium-speed main engine, a geared propeller system, a shaft motor/generator (PTO/PTI) and a battery-based energy storage system (ESS) as well as an auxiliary genset. An integrated energy management system (EMS) ensures that the various elements are optimally integrated for maximum benefit.

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    How Wärtsilä supports you on your hybridisation and decarbonisation journey

    • A detailed analysis of alternative propulsion machinery systems with an open and transparent benchmarking of the alternative solutions, based on parameters such as GHG emission, CAPEX, OPEX, EEDI and CII.
    • This analysis is complemented with a detailed technical specification that presents the scope of supply to assist you in integrating the propulsion machinery system into your vessel specification.
    • Finally, a functional specification describes how the proposed propulsion machinery systems will be integrated and operate and details their functionalities and operational modes. This helps you to understand the full potential of the solution and ensure its successful integration into the vessel design.

    System operational modes

    Short Sea Shipping - Landing page

    Mechanical Mode
    ​ Hybrid Mode
    Electric Mode
    Zero emission mode
    Boost Mode
    Manoeuvring mode
    Hotel mode
    Main engine genset mode

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    Downloads & Links

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    Customer references

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