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Thursday, November 18, 2021 

Aveiro Municipality in Portugal plans to integrate its first fully electric ferry, which will be powered by Danfoss Editron divisions electric propulsion system, into its public transportation system in 2022,

The vessel will replace an existing diesel-powered ferry operating between Ilhavo, and Aveiro. The new electric ferry forms part of the country’s effort to accelerate the transition to emission-free public transport solutions. Increased electrification of the transportation sector is expected to play a key role in the country’s efforts to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

Built by Portuguese shipyard Navaltagus, the 37m, two-deck ferry will be capable of carrying up to 260 passengers and 19 vehicles, an increased capacity of 90% and 30% respectively compared to its existing counterpart. Despite its increased capacity and change in power source, the new ferry will be able to maintain its 15-minute crossing time and 5-knot speed, with the possibility of reaching 9 knots.

To power the vessel, Navaltagus turned to engineering and Installation partner Nave de Luz Lda, as well as electrification integrator Technology Venture Middle East Marine Services and Marine Electrical. The latter subsequently chose Danfoss’ Editron division’s drivetrain and a battery system supplied by SPBES PLANB. The ferry will be equipped with a Danfoss Editron marine drivetrain, consisting of a fully integrated DC link system for power plant and propulsion, including power electronics, hotel transformers, DC link cabinets and power management software. The system is said to be the most compact and lightweight on the market, at half the size of traditional AC-based analogue systems.

Navaltagus estimates that the new ferry will help save around 300t of CO2 emissions annually, plus make the crossing more comfortable and quieter for passengers.

Philipp Fedorov, Marine Sales Director, Editron Division, Danfoss, said: “Portugal has recently started to integrate electric solutions in its maritime transport, and we’re delighted to be working on one of the country’s first projects. The electrification of the marine industry is of utmost importance to enable countries to reach their carbon neutrality targets. We’re looking forward to working on similar projects across Southern Europe.”

Arun Sudarsan, Manager Operations and Technical, Technology Venture Middle East Marine Services, added: “Danfoss Editron division’s plug-and-play solution and approach were one of our main reasons for choosing them as our partner. Being able to easily integrate electric systems within newly built or retrofitted vessels is a huge selling point when it comes to increasing the electrification of the marine industry.”

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