Partners in the TrAM project announced that construction has started on the world’s first fully electric passenger fast ferry.
he ship, equipped to carry around 150 passengers, will be equipped with two electric motors and a 1.5MWh capacity battery with charging power of more than 2MW.
This will be the world’s first fully electric and zero emission fast ferry classed in accordance with the International Code of Safety for High-Speed Crafts (HSC Code).
As the TrAM project’s demonstrator vessel, it will begin a trial passenger service between the city of Stavanger and surrounding communities and islands in spring 2022 to test and validate the project findings. The vessel has been designed for a service speed of 23 knots and has been named Medstraum.
The TrAM project was launched by industry cluster organization NCE Maritime CleanTech and is being coordinated by Kolumbus, the independent mobility services arm of Rogaland County Council.
TrAM’s overall aim is to develop new modular methods for the design and production of zero-emission fast ferries for inshore passenger transport, in order to reduce investment costs and delivery time
said project manager Mikal Dahle of Kolumbus.
The TrAM project scope also includes the development of two further ‘replicator’ vessels, one for passenger operations on the River Thames in London and the other for deployment on inland waterways in Belgium.
The project partners have also worked to optimize the design of the Medstraum and the hydrodynamic performance of the hull.
Using advanced modularisation, the project aims to lower production costs and engineering hours for electric fast ferries by 25% and 70%, respectively, which will significantly enhance their competitiveness.
Hege Økland, CEO of NCE Maritime CleanTech, emphasized that electric-powered high-speed vessels are highly relevant for urban areas all over the world.
Streamlined manufacturing is a very important factor as it increases the attractiveness of such vessels in terms of cost and footprint. In addition to their green credentials, they also support the renewed use of inshore waterways in Europe for freight and passenger transport
The TrAM project started in 2018 and has secured EUR 11.7m in funding from the European Union’s Horizon2020 research and innovation programme, one of the largest amounts ever awarded to a single project. The project has also received funding for dissemination activities from the Research Council of Norway.