HH Ferries’ 11,223gt/1991 built Tycho Brahe (above) is to be converted to an emissionfree ship. Swiss-based power and automation technology group ABB will equip this and the 10,918gt/1992 built Aurora af Helsingborg, with 4.16 MW batteries propulsion. The Oresund Dry Docks in Sweden are undertaking the work. The two ferries will operate completely on battery power between Helsingor (Denmark) and Helsingborg (Sweden), carrying more than 7.4 million passengers and 1.9 million vehicles annually. The dry-docking of the Tycho Brahe will begin in April and she will operate as a fully electric ferry once work is completed. The Aurora af Helsingborg will undergo the same process in October 2017. The project also includes the installation of four fully automated shore-side charging arms and these are currently under construction in ABB’s factories. At both ports, ABB will supply the first automated shore-side charging stations using an ABB industrial robot, to optimise the connection time and therefore maximise the charging period. The new battery solution is expected to decrease emissions across the fleet by 50% from the current diesel operated vessels. It takes more than a pair of AA batteries to operate a ferry and 640 batteries of 6.5 kWh will be installed on each ferry along with two deckhouses for transformers, converters and cooling of the batteries. Cables will run from the deckhouses to connecting points at each end of the ship, so that the batteries can be quickcharged. The battery power is equivalent to that of 70 Teslas (a brand of battery powered car). The SEK 300 million investment is cofinanced with SEK 120 million by INEA, the EU’s executive agency for innovation and network. Upon completion the Tycho Brahe will become the world’s largest emission-free ferry.
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