DAWN (AT MIDNIGHT) OF A NEW HYBRID FERRY ERA: Hurtigruten’s new battery-powered ship makes first stop in Longyearbyen overnight under sunny skies

hybridferry

A ferry docks in Longyearbyen at about 1 a.m. July 27, 2019, allowing visitors the unusual opportunity to take a "day" tour ashore in the early morning hours. Photo by Mark Sabbatini / Icepeople.

0 0
Read Time:2 Minute, 12 Second

Since the ship is designed for maximum energy efficiency in the Arctic in particular, it’s only fitting nature provided a matching setting as Hurtigruten’s first hybrid-powered ferry made its debut in Longyearbyen with a 12-hour stop beginning at 10 p.m. Friday where passengers were able to spend a long “day” exploring under clear skies lit by the midnight sun.

ferrylivecam
A live webcam on the Roald Amundsen hybrid ferry offers a 360-degree view of its debut stop in Longyearbyen on Friday and Saturday. Image courtesy of Hurtigruten.

The Roald Amundsen, promoted as the world’s most environmentally friendly cruise ship due largely to being able to operate exclusively from battery packs for periods of time. Its stop in Svalbard is part of a voyage that will take the ship to Greenland and Iceland before it heads south to Antarctica for voyages during the southern hemisphere’s summer season.

“I think it’s wonderful and I think the nature is wonderful,” said Renate Hillig, a Hamburg resident reboarding the ship after exploring Longyearbyen on Saturday morning. She said she specifically booked the trip on the Roald Amundsen because of its hybrid capabilities.

“It’s really very new and they try not to be so dirty,” she said. “When they’re in the Arctic they don’t drive with fuel. Also, the passengers have to go for the nature – don’t use so much water or as many towels.”

Passengers are urged not to leave any trash behind during port stops, and to bring any plastics or other waste material observed during shore excursions back on board.

The ship’s guides also emphasize the ship’s capabilities, and the threats such as climate change and pollution facing the Arctic, Hillig said, and there are facilities such as a science center so passengers wanting a more in-depth immersion into the experience.

The hybrid technology and other energy-saving measures, such as route planning that minimizes the load on engines, reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by 20 percent, according to Hurtigruten. The ship is also classified as an ice class PC6 vessel, meaning it has specific capabilities to help travel in polar regions.

It is the first of three such ships Hurtigruten is planning the deploy, with the Fridtjof Nansen currently under construction and scheduled for her maiden voyage next year.  A third hybrid-powered sister ship has a possible launch date of 2021. The company is also upgrading at least six of existing ships, replacing conventional diesel propulsion with what it calls a unique combination of batteries, liquefied natural gas and liquefied bio gas.

 

 

 

About Post Author

Mark Sabbatini

I'm a professional transient living on a tiny Norwegian island next door to the North Pole, where once a week (or thereabouts) I pollute our extreme and pristine environment with paper fishwrappers decorated with seemingly random letters that would cause a thousand monkeys with a thousand typewriters to die of humiliation. Such is the wisdom one acquires after more than 25 years in the world's second-least-respected occupation, much of it roaming the seven continents in search of jazz, unrecognizable street food and escorts I f****d with by insisting they give me the platonic tours of their cities promised in their ads. But it turns out this tiny group of islands known as Svalbard is my True Love and, generous contributions from you willing, I'll keep littering until they dig my body out when my climate-change-deformed apartment collapses or they exile my penniless ass because I'm not even worthy of washing your dirty dishes.
Happy
Happy
0 %
Sad
Sad
0 %
Excited
Excited
0 %
Sleepy
Sleepy
0 %
Angry
Angry
0 %
Surprise
Surprise
0 %

Average Rating

5 Star
0%
4 Star
0%
3 Star
0%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%