Agreement to develop world's first marine wireless charging and mooring concept

Integrated wireless charging and mooring concept is to be developed by Wartsila and Cavotec.



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Updated on 26 Jan 2016 08:13 GMT

An agreement has been signed between Finnish firm Wärtsilä and Switzerland-headquartered Cavotec to jointly develop the world's first combined induction charging and automatic mooring concept.

Wärtsilä has developed a wireless charging system based on inductive power transfer. Cavotec provides automated mooring systems for various types of vessels, as well as shore power and reel systems. By combining the strengths and expertise of the two companies, an integrated wireless charging and mooring concept is to be developed for use in Wärtsilä's ship designs.

Wireless charging eliminates the cable connection between the vessel and shore, thereby securing and facilitating safe connections and disconnections. It also reduces maintenance since wear and tear to physical connection lines is eliminated. Similarly, damage to electrical outlets caused by seawater, snow and ice is also avoided. The new project's integrated system will be capable of transferring more than 1 MW of electrical energy. This is some 300 times more than that of current chargers used by electric cars.

Cavotec's mooring system is a vacuum-based automated mooring technology that eliminates the need for conventional mooring lines. Remote controlled vacuum pads recessed into, or mounted on the quayside, moor and release vessels in seconds.

"During recent years, wireless charging has been introduced for cars, busses and trains. Wärtsilä has now made this possible also for marine vessels. This agreement with Cavotec will enable this technology to be delivered as an integrated charging and mooring system," remarked Peter Rogers, Director Power Products, Wärtsilä Marine Solutions.

"This is an exciting project and we are delighted to be partnering with Wärtsilä to make shipping cleaner, safer, and easier. The envisioned integrated wireless charging and mooring system will further the marine industry's environmental profile," said Ottonel Popesco, CEO of Cavotec Group.

Wärtsilä has already launched a ferry concept that features wireless induction battery charging.

"The environmental challenge has been the starting point for Wärtsilä's work in developing battery/hybrid technology for marine vessels. By making wireless charging of ship batteries possible, the electrification of coastal shipping is enhanced, resulting in major reductions in harmful exhaust emissions," Wärtsilä said.