Hurtigruten Norway Upgrades Its First Ship to Battery-hybrid Power
Hurtigruten Norway announced it has launched its first environmentally-upgraded battery-hybrid powered ship as part of a €100 million seven vessel refit program aimed at significantly reducing both CO2 and NOx emissions.
MS Richard With has gone through extensive upgrades, having been retrofitted with two large battery packs (1,120kWh each) and new, more efficient Norwegian-made engines and new propulsion systems at Myklebust Yard in northwestern Norway. The vessel also received new switchboards and power management systems; new propeller blades, bulbous bow, gears and control systems; new navigational and maneuvering bridge systems; new boilers that improve heat recovery from the main engines for heating; new retractable azimuth thruster astern; and state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plants.
All seven of Hurtigruten Norway's Coastal Express ships will also be fitted with SCR systems that cut NOx emissions by 80% before the end of summer 2023. The company noted that it will also use certified biofuels to cut CO2 emissions.
"With MS Richard back in operations as a fully-upgraded ship, guests can sail the Norwegian coast on a quieter, state-of-the-art, and environmentally-friendly ship, while enjoying a traditional experience unlike anything in the world. Over the next year, all our seven Coastal Express ships will be upgraded to be more sustainable," said Hedda Felin, CEO of Hurtigruten Norway.
The move follows its sister company, Hurtigruten Expeditions, introducing the battery-hybrid powered expedition ship MS Roald Amundsen in 2019. The expedition cruise brand now has three battery-hybrid powered ships in its fleet.
"Becoming a green company means investing in efforts with documented effects, such as the ones we are doing now. As a result, by next summer, we will have three upgraded hybrid ships sailing the coast, and our entire fleet will be more energy efficient, cutting CO2-emissions by 25% and NOx by 80%," Felin said.
"This is one of the largest environmental upgrades of its kind in Europe, and the largest in Hurtigruten's history," Felin said. "Our goal is to get to zero emissions, and the work to plan the next generation zero emission vessels has already started. Until that technology has been pioneered, we are investing heavily in giving our existing fleet a green upgrade with the best technology available today, but our plan is to have the first emission-free ship in our fleet by 2030, and we're working hard on achieving that."