Sunday, September 14, 2014

Ferry innovation? Wazzat? (Updated)

Eighteen years after Norway committed to using LNG and CNG powered ferries, BC's highly paid fleet commanders are dipping toes into alternative fuels. Three ferries to be constructed in Poland will have duel fuel capacity: LNG and diesel.

However, innovators in Norway have moved beyond natural gas. Sustainability expert Bjørn K. Haugland believes that within a few years, most Norwegian ferries will be battery powered. Siemens, a multinational engineering and electronics giant, provides detail about a new vessel that is only a little smaller than those coming from Poland in BC Ferries' $252 million purchase.
"Together with the Norwegian shipyard Fjellstrand, Siemens has developed the world's first electrically powered car ferry. The 80-meter vessel can carry 120 cars and 360 passengers. The vessel currently serving the route uses approx one million liters of diesel a year and emits 2680 metric tons of carbon dioxide and 37 metric tons of nitrogen oxides.

"The ferry has been specially designed to accommodate the requirements of an electric drive system. As a catamaran with two slim hulls, it offers less resistance in the water than a conventional vessel. Furthermore, the hulls are made of aluminum instead of steel, which is conventionally used. Rather than a diesel engine, the ferry is equipped with electric motors to drive the ship's two screws. The new vessel weighs only half as much as a ferry of conventional design.

"The crucial feature of the new ferry is that it only takes 10 minutes to recharge the batteries. Hundreds of ferries link Norway's mainland to the islands off its coast and provide routes across its many fjords. Using today's battery and recharging technology, all crossings of up to 30 minutes in duration could be served by electrically powered vessels."
The following was published here in November of 2013 and it describes another vessel that was proposed for use in Norway:

With 20 directors on two boards and two well compensated ferry commissioners overseeing by far the highest priced ferry managers in the world, BC Ferries should be world leaders in innovation.

Not quite. Norwegian ferry operator Fjord1 has a dozen LNG ferries in service or on order, with the largest equipped to carry more than 250 vehicles. Now, they've announced the next generation vessel:
"Multi Maritime has, in close cooperation with the ferry operator Fjord1, launched a new green ferry concept. The ferry is a “plug-in” LNG hybrid, which incorporates several features to reduce the ferry’s environmental footprint. The concept has been developed as a part of Fjord1′s bid for operating the Lavik-Oppedal ferry link in western Norway.

The most eye catching feature is the two Flettner rotors which acts as sails. For the Lavik-Oppedal link, which has wind conditions suitable for the Flettner rotors, it has been calculated that the rotors contribute with minimum 12% of the ferry’s total energy consumption. The theoretical potential is significantly bigger..."

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  1. Seems like a much more sensible use than piping/freezing/sailing the stuff to the Chinese. Now if only some enterprising agency would only apply this concept to the propellant of Railway Engines. Perhaps the domestic use of the stuff would reduce our energy costs to the extent our manufacturing industry could again be competitive.
    Johns Aghast

  2. According to this article several railway companies are testing the concept.

  3. How bout retro coal locomotive.we have lots of it.
    And about ferries figure a way to paint rust on the boats.Some boats are almost as rusty as the van city hall flag poles .

    1. We in British Columbia are not against fueling ships, trains, factories or buildings with coal. It's just we want the coal burned elsewhere. By burning the coal in Asia, that won't have any effect on our part of the world. Will it?

      Maybe the reason BC Ferries has dragged its heals on LNG powered ships is that they're planning a conversion to nuclear. Nov, if there is a way to treat rust with radiation, that would be a clincher.

  4. I think powering BC ferries with Nat Gas is a great idea. Better than exporting it as LNG. I also like the rotor sails.

    Trucks, cars and buses can all be converted to nat gas. It's probably cheaper than gasoline, and would mean less reliance on the dirty oil sands, I reckon.

    BC could provide encouragement with subsidies to make the conversions. Why not?

  5. Hugh for Premier!!

  6. Unfortunately, BC really doesn't do very much that makes sense - let alone come up with something that makes a real contribution to the green house gas problem. Why would they, the BC Liberal government agenda is corporate driven and not to save money for the province, rather to suck as much away from the public coffers as time allows.

    Engine manufacturers of Fairbanks Morse engines used in diesel locomotives and ships, have been using natural gas for fuel for decades - it isn't something new. Canada and especially the current British Columbia Provincial Government are way behind the rest of the world regarding smart ideas because the whole premise of being innovative and saving taxpayer money is lost on them. It takes someone with a decent dose of common sense to show the way - a country like Norway - that has wisely invested north sea oil income to ensure future financial stability, that it is possible to be innovative and environmentally sound in engineering proposals. This is something that British Columbia is sadly lacking in - lets build (waste of money) on a three billion dollar bridge and cram more cars and trucks into Vancouver instead of providing an efficient and affordable railway system. Lets send our tax payers money overseas to build ships instead of building them right here in BC WTF ?

    Words fail to adequately describe the pathetic legacy of Gordon "pinnochio" Campbell where grabbing public funds and stupidity vie for dominance.


  7. LNG for B.C. Ferries makes sense. Makes more sense than shipping it elsewhere. This country ought to use its own resources in its own country instead of shipping it overseas as such a high speed. Our country will be around for as long as the population is here. Lets save some of this for the citizens of Canada, who will be here in two hundred years.

    Running B.C. Ferries, on LNG, would reduce costs and pollution. The industry might want to look at fueling vehicles this way also. Most of our driving is done to work and back. Just think of the savings, if people could run their cars on LNG--environmental and monetarily.

    now the picture of the "propose" ferry, sort of reminds me of another set of ferries. The ones el gordo sold for nickels and dimes. Oh, how wonderful. Now we have ferries built in Germany and Poland and no jobs created in B.C.

    Norway has managed its natural resource revenue much more smartly than Canada has. They'll still be enjoying the benefits for centuries to come. B.C./Canada, we'll be broke and cleaning up the pollution China will have left us.

  8. Re Polish built ferries - how are they being paid for. Have the BC Lieberals paid cash or are they taking out another loan in an overseas country (Poland) ?
    Something is going on no doubt, but it will be quite some time before the people of BC find out the details - if at all.
    Of course using LNG and propane to fuel vehicles, ships, trains makes eminent sense. I 1983 I had a 1976 F150 pickup powered with propane and it was cheap to run.

    The current British Columbia government is very slooooooow on the uptake where common sense is concerned.


  9. November 30, 2013 LNG BC Ferry Report 3GA Marine
    Review of the technical specifications for the BCFS intermediate class ferry and the provisions of the BC Ferry Commission Order 13-01 - 13-11-13-3ga-report.pdf

    ..... the current BCF requirement specifies a dual fuel diesel and Liquid Natural Gas engine, which is less efficient than a diesel only engine. Accordingly, the fuel efficiency target for the dual fuel engine is lower and is expected to result in a predicted fuel efficiency of 6.5%, which is included in the RRP technical specifications.

    Endurance and Fuel Efficiency

    The Vessel shall be capable of operating for seven (7) days standard duty cycle on LNG without refueling: there shall be sufficient diesel carried for four (4) days standard duty cycle when running the DF engines on diesel only. The design deadweight shall be based on this operating cycle, exclusive of any reserve.

    Note: A duel fuel engine uses a small amount of diesel fuel to initiate the ignition of the air / gas mixture in the engine. At fully rated loads this can be as low as 1% of the total fuel however at lower loads the % of diesel used increases significantly

    One Question. On page 4 of 9: 5500 hours annual operation; 16 hour operational day

    5500 hours annual operation / 16 hours day = 343.75 days

    A year is 365 days

    21.25 days non-operational????

    Then there's the small matter of spray on the deck 95% of the time: Beaufort Sea State 5 rating, which specifies a wave height of 2 meters.

  10. Information provided in this page is informative and interesting.One of the famous firm Norwegian shipping firm Norled introducing world's first electrical car and passenger ferry powered by batteries.It uses just 150kWh per route and which equals to 3 days use of electricity in Norewgian household.Addition of this ferry will be the boost for Norway's coastline.



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