New hybrid UK ferry will feature a broad range of Wärtsilä solutions for environmental efficiency

Wärtsilä Corporation, Trade press release 22 July 2016 at 10:00 UTC+2
  • Fishbourne-2016

A new ferry being built at the Cemre shipyard in Turkey for UK operator Wightlink, will feature a comprehensive range of modern Wärtsilä equipment and systems to ensure a high level of environmental efficiency. In addition to conventional fuel, the new vessel will be the first ferry to utilise Wärtsilä hybrid battery technology to improve efficiency, reduce the exhaust emissions and lower the noise level.

The scope includes four 6-cylinder Wärtsilä 20 generating sets, electrical and automation (E&A) systems, and a sanitary discharge system. Among the E&A systems to be supplied are an integrated automation system (IAS), a power and energy management system (PMS/EMS), and a 690 volt main switchboard. The specification for the order was agreed in September 2015, and a contract signed with Cemre shipyard in June 2016.

The ferry will serve the crossing between the Isle of Wight and the English mainland, and the Wärtsilä solutions will make it the most environmentally sustainable vessel ever on this route. A notable contributor to this is the Wärtsilä hybrid management system. This enables a significant energy improvement over conventional systems by running the engines at optimal load and absorbing many of the load fluctuations using batteries.

“This new Wightlink ferry is designed to be energy efficient and environmentally sustainable using the latest Wärtsilä technologies. In particular, the use of Wärtsilä’s hybrid system represents a state-of-the-art solution for propulsion efficiency, which in turn has a beneficial effect on exhaust emissions,” says Stephan Kuhn, Vice President, Electrical & Automation at Wärtsilä.

“Wightlink carries more than four and a half million passengers each year and is the leading cross-Solent ferry company connecting the south coast of England with the Isle of Wight. Our new vessel will be Wightlink's flagship, and we thank Wärtsilä for their close cooperation in this project. We are confident that the Wärtsilä equipment and systems are exactly the right choice for this modern ferry,” says Wightlink Operations Director Elwyn Dop.

Delivery of the Wärtsilä equipment is scheduled to commence in spring 2017, and the vessel will enter service in 2018.The vessel will feature two fixed vehicle decks to hold the equivalent of 178 cars, and will have space for more than 1000 passengers. In addition to the propulsion machinery, E&A systems, and sewage treatment, Wärtsilä is also supplying technical and project management, and solution integration engineering services.

Wärtsilä Hybrid Technology: Wärtsilä has been an active proponent of environmentally sustainable propulsion solutions for shipping, notably through introducing engines capable of running on LNG, ethylene and bio-fuels, and then supporting the technology with the appropriate storage, supply and control systems. The company is also a leader in developing battery powered propulsion solutions for shipping. The company’s hybrid system involves the use of both conventional marine engines and batteries. The solution offers environmental benefits since exhaust emissions are considerably reduced. 

Images: ‘New Wightlink ferry design’ and ‘Sketch of the Wightlink ferry loading at the Fishbourne terminal, Isle of Wight’


Media contacts:

Karl Hinks
Area Sales Manager, Marine Solutions
Wärtsilä UK Ltd
Tel: +44 (0)7775 807162

Ms Marit Holmlund-Sund
Senior Manager Marketing, Communications, Marine Solutions
Wärtsilä Corporation
Tel: +358 10 709 1439


Wärtsilä in brief:
Wärtsilä is a global leader in advanced technologies and complete lifecycle solutions for the marine and energy markets. By emphasising sustainable innovation and total efficiency, Wärtsilä maximises the environmental and economic performance of the vessels and power plants of its customers.
In 2015, Wärtsilä's net sales totalled EUR 5 billion with approximately 18,800 employees. The company has operations in over 200 locations in more than 70 countries around the world. Wärtsilä is listed on Nasdaq Helsinki.