ABB, the leading power and automation technology group, won orders worth $180 million in 2013 to deliver complete electrical power plants and propulsion systems for six new cruise liners that include its latest-generation Azipod XO units. The orders make 2013 the best-ever year for ABB in cruise liners with the Azipod system.
The six ships include two for Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL), two for Royal Caribbean International and one each for Holland America Line and Carnival Cruise Lines, all leading brands in the cruise market. The orders were booked over the course of the year, with about $30 million in the first quarter, about $90 million in the second, about $30 million in the third, and the remaining $30 million in the fourth.
Azipod is an electric propulsion unit, which is housed in a submerged pod outside the ship hull. The pod contains a variable-speed electric motor which drives a fixed-pitch propeller, and can be rotated around its vertical axis to provide propulsion thrust freely in any direction. The Azipod propulsion system eliminates the need for rudders, stern transversal thrusters or long shaft lines inside the ship’s hull. Since its introduction 20 years ago, the Azipod system has found favor among builders of cruise liners and ice-going ships.
“This is a remarkable run of orders for our cruise-ship power and propulsion systems, confirming ABB’s leading position in this high-end market,” said Veli-Matti Reinikkala, head of ABB’s Process Automation division. “Since the launch of the Azipod XO, nearly all of the ships ordered will be equipped with this new generation unit.”
The two ships for NCL are Breakaway Plus class vessels and include complete electrical systems, each with two Azipod XO propulsion units and three bow thrusters. Each has163,000 gross tonnage (gt) with capacity for4,200 passengers and are due for delivery from German shipyard Meyer Werft GmbH in October 2015 and spring 2017 respectively. ABB will supply Azipod XO units with combined propulsion power of almost 40 MW, plus generators, transformers, frequency converters and related power system equipment. The installation includes ABB’s new “Intelligent Maneuvering Interface” (IMI), which is equipped with the ‘red dot’ design award-winning ABB Azimuth lever and the Azipod Dynamic Optimizing system which can enable fuel savings of up to two percent.
The ships for the Holland America Line and Carnival Cruise Lines are under construction at Fincantieri yards in Italy. For the former, ABB will supply the complete electrical power plant and propulsion system, with 28 MW of power, for a 99,500 gt, 2,660-passenger capacity liner, due for delivery at the start of 2016. The latter liner, 133,500 gt, 4,000-passenger capacity, named Carnival Vista, will feature ABB power plant and propulsion systems, augmented by generators, main switchboards, a remote control system and distribution transformers.
One of the liners for Royal Caribbean International is the Oasis 3, due for delivery from STX France in the second quarter of 2016, equipped with three 20 MW Azipod XO units from ABB. The 225,282 gt, 5,400 passenger-capacity ship will also be equipped with ABB propulsion transformers, propulsion drives and remote control systems. The other, being built by Meyer Werft GmbH, will feature two 20,5 MW Azipod XO propulsion systems as well as generators, main switchboard, a remote control system, bow thruster motors and set of transformers. The ship will be delivered in April 2016.