Stena to introduce battery powered ropaxes

2021-02-12T18:51:04+00:00 February 12th, 2021|Environment|

Stena Line is planning to operate two fossil-free battery powered vessels on its Gothenburg/Frederikshavn in Denmark route no later than 2030.

This was announced by Stena Lines CEO Niclas Mårtensson during a presentation about the industry collaboration project Tranzero Initiative, in Gothenburg on 4th February.

In an effort to speed up the transition to fossil-free fuels in the transport sector, Stena Line together with Volvo Group, Scania and the Port of Gothenburg, have joined forces in the Tranzero Initiative collaboration project to bring about a significant reduction in carbon emissions linked to the largest port in the Scandinavia.

The aim is to cut the Port of Gothenburg’s emissions by 70% by 2030.

“We now move from vision to vessel with the battery powered vessel ‘Stena Elektra’. Within a year, we will present the outline specifications and at the latest by 2025, we plan to order the first vessel. This will be a huge step towards fossil free shipping,” said Mårtensson, who is also a member of the Swedish Government Electrification Commission.

‘Stena Elektra’ will be the world’s first fossil free ropax of its size. She will be about 200 m long with a passenger capacity of 1,000 plus 3,000 lane metres for freight.

The vessel will be built of high tensile steel to lower the weight and increase efficiency and it is estimated she will run on battery power for about 50 nautical miles, the distance between Gothenburg and Frederikshavn.

The battery capacity will need to be around 60-70 MW/h and the battery will be charged in port. Stena Line said that it is also looking into combining electric power with other alternative fossil free fuels, such as fuel cells, hydrogen and bio-methanol for longer voyages.

“The electrification of shipping has only just began. We see a great potential for both battery hybrids and battery powered vessels on several of our short-sea shipping routes in the future.

“But, it takes more than the electrical ships, we also need to develop the infrastructure and charging possibilities in the ports and terminals in the same pace and that is a reason why collaborations projects like this are so important,” Mårtensson said.

Since 2018, Stena Line has been operating the battery hybrid vessel ‘Stena Jutlandica’ on the Gothenburg/Frederikshavn route, using battery power for manoeuvring and powering the bow thrusters when the ship is in port.

The batteries are charged in Gothenburg, as well as during operation and in total, the CO2 emissions are lowered by 1,500 tonnes per year.