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Wednesday, September 23, 2020 

ABB has won a contract with Guangzhou Shipyard in China to supply integrated solutions for P&O Ferries two new vessels, which will be equipped with hybrid propulsion, using electric power from 8.8MWh batteries and diesel generators, driving Azipod thrusters.

ABB estimates that the system will cut fuel consumption on P&O Ferries’ Dover-Calais route by 40%, with batteries providing full power for harbour manoeuvring and time in port. This will prepare the vessels for a zero-emission future once more electric shore charging stations are available.

Equipped with four Azipod propulsion units per vessel, each rated at 7.5 megawatt, the 230m long vessels will be the largest passenger and freight ferries to sail the route when they enter service in 2023. The benefits of bridge-to-propeller integration proved decisive in selecting the hybrid solution for the new ferries, according to P&O Ferries.

In addition to Azipod propulsion and energy storage, the new ships will feature a comprehensive scope of ABB solutions to cover power and propulsion, automation and power energy management. ABB’s Power and Energy Management System (PEMS) is closely integrated with the electrical system and ensures optimal use of the vessel’s total power resources by improving the information flow across shipboard systems.

Guangzhou Shipyard Chairman Zhongqian Chen said: “The P&O ferries under construction at the Guangzhou Shipyard International are truly iconic. We are delighted to strengthen our strategic cooperation with the technology leader ABB and to work together on this leading-edge project, considering ABB’s proven supplier status in the global ferry market.”

“We are proud to have ABB technology at the heart of P&O Ferries’ sustainability program, as it transitions to the zero-emission future envisaged for shipping,” said Juha Koskela, Division President, ABB Marine & Ports.

Built to a double-ended design where the vessels will feature a pair of Azipod units and a bridge at each end, there will be no need to turn ships in port. The captain and senior officers will simply walk to the opposite bridge, saving seven minutes on each outbound and return journey and one ton of fuel – a sixth of what is currently used on the 21-mile crossing.

The vessels will be equipped with ABB Ability Marine Pilot Control, which automates some navigational tasks to allow bridge officers to focus on ship control and positioning.

The vessels’ engines will be equipped with ABB’s Power2 two-stage turbocharging system that will further improve power efficiency and help achieve up to 5% in fuel savings and up to 60% of NOx emissions.

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