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Friday, November 12, 2021 

Volvo Penta and Danfoss Editron division have combined to develop a fully-integrated propulsion system for two of the UKs first hybrid electric crew transfer vessels (CTVs), which in their first month of operation at rsteds Hornsea Project 2 offshore wind farm are already making a positive environmental impact.

A recent announcement from COP26 was the promise of GB£ 160m in new government funding to support the building of floating offshore wind farms in Scotland and Wales. This is likely to mean that more CTVs will be needed to deliver supplies and transport workers to the offshore sites.

Wind farm transfer company MHO-Co is meeting this growing demand for transportation between shore and wind farms in the greenest and most economically viable way. The company recently took delivery of two new hybrid vessels to service iHornsea Project 2 in the North Sea. The two vessels - MHO Asgard and MHO Apollo – are powered by combined technology from Volvo Penta and Danfoss Editron.

Peter Granqvist, CTO Volvo Penta, said: “Cross-industry collaboration is needed now more than ever to take steps towards mitigating the negative impacts of climate change. By working together, we’ve been able to begin to make real change with impressive fuel and emission savings as well as more flexible operation for our customers.”

The two-hybrid vessels have logged over 330 engine hours between them in the field – as well as 1000 hours on their maiden voyage from China to the North Sea. MHO Asgard and MHO Apollo have ferried over 50 workers and numerous supplies to the wind farm, about 89km off the UK's Yorkshire coast. The vessels – both equipped with Volvo Penta Inboard Performance System (IPS) – have already registered fuel savings of 20.89%, reducing CO2 emissions by 20.96% compared to non-hybrid vessels, without IPS, in MHO-Co's fleet.

Another major advantage of the hybrid vessels is the multiple power systems onboard, which Danfoss Editron and Volvo Penta have dubbed 'the Power of Plenty'.

MHO-Co CEO Mik Henriksen said: “This new system gives us more flexibility and allows us to switch between engines and do maintenance when it fits our schedule, without affecting the service to our customers. We are also able to use just one small engine when idling in the wind park offering significant fuel saving and noise advantage when in waiting position. I think we have the best system possible with the technology that exists today.”

Danfoss Editron and Volvo Penta have been working closely together on the design, build, and delivery of the vessels, enabling the vessels to operate in zero-emissions electric mode for up to eight hours, or combined with fuel propulsion, to achieve a maximum speed of approximately 24 knots.

“In these hybrid crew transfer vessels, we are addressing marine electrified propulsion with one total system solution,” said Granqvist.

Kimmo Rauma, VP Editron division, Danfoss, added: "We’re proud to have pushed the limits of technology with Volvo Penta. MHO-Co now has access to the best technology and services from two of the leading companies that are offering marine electrification solutions to the global market.”

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