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First LNG-fuelled ferry to be built in Italy heads for Canada

07 Apr 2015 11:32 GMT

Vessel features an integrated diesel-electric propulsion system, with four power generators that can run on either LNG or marine diesel oil.



The first gas-powered passenger ship to be built in Italy, F.A. Gauthier, has left the Fincantieri shipyard in Castellammare di Stabia, Naples, and is on its way to Matane, in Québec, Canada. The vessel departed on April 1.

The delivery to Société des traversiers du Québec (STQ) - a Québec crown corporation that operates in maritime passenger and vehicles transport - is due to take place when the ferry arrives in Canada.

The 133-metre-long, 3,000-deadweight-tonne (dwt) vessel, is to be the first ferry of its type to operate in North America. It features an integrated diesel-electric propulsion system with four diesel power generators that can run on either liquefied natural gas (LNG) or marine diesel oil.

The ship's name, F.A. Gauthier, is in honour of Félix-Adrien Gauthier, mayor of the town of Matane from 1960-1963 and founder of the Matane-Godbout ferry route.

In a statement, Fincantieri said: "A genuine concentration of technology, it adopts the most advanced solutions in terms of energy saving and low environmental impact, enabling a major reduction in emissions of CO2 (carbon dioxide), NOx (nitrogen oxides) and reducing to almost zero the SOx (sulphur oxides)."

The company added: "This propulsion system fully meets the ecological requirements of the ECA areas [Emission Control Areas] (Baltic Sea, North Sea, Caribbean, North America)."

An advanced Navis Nav DP 4000 dynamic positioning system was specified for F.A. Gauthier. The technology is designed to ensure that the vessel achieves optimum performance in the difficult navigational conditions in the Gulf of St Lawrence.

Finland-based Navis Engineering supplied its dynamic position technology to the new ferry, which has been accorded DP (CM) notation by Lloyds Register.

"The ship, certified in the highest class designated by international registries for this type of service, is also in ice class 1A with regards to the hull and propulsion class 1AS, which are the highest levels awarded by these classification registries and which allow the vessel to operate non-stop in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, known for its adverse weather conditions. F.A. Gauthier is also able to break sea ice, thanks to its innovative bow and stern, designed and patented by Fincantieri," Fincantieri said.

The ferry's two electric propulsion engines operate azimuth thrusters, each equipped with two counter-rotating propellers, which together with bow thrusters are designed to make the ferry "exceptionally manoeuvrable".

The F.A. Gauthier is capable of service speeds of up to 20 knots, and is scheduled to provide year-round passenger and vehicle transportation on routes linking the communities of Matane, Baie-Comeau and Godbout.

With an anticipated 1,600 sailings a year, the vessel is expected to transport over 180,000 passengers and over 85,000 vehicles a year.

According to recent ship-tracking data, the F.A. Gauthier reached Gibraltar on April 5 and was heading for Ponta Delgada in the Azores.






Related Links:

North America's first LNG-powered ferry to be delivered in Canada
North America's first LNG-powered ferry

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