Part of its Clean Future Plan, BC Ferries continues with the launch of its third battery electric hybrid Island Class vessel which entered the water earlier this week at DAMEN Shipyard in Romania.
The new ship is scheduled for sea trials in February. After successful completion of its sea trials, the vessel will make its way to Victoria, Canada (Point Hope Maritime) in summer 2021 for final preparation. The yet to be named ship is due to begin service in 2022 on the Campbell River – Quadra Island route.
A fourth Island Class ferry is scheduled to be added to the same route in 2022 with the two smaller vessel to replace an existing larger vessel (Powell River Queen). The change will result in customers having more frequent service, increased capacity per hour and reduced vehicle line-ups. Additionally this will eliminate the need to consume more greenspace to increase the size of terminal holding compounds.
The Island Class is a battery-powered ferry with a number of key features that support BC Ferries goals to be efficient and environmental responsible throughout its system.
- Electric power and propulsion systems
- Battery-hybrid power systems improve efficiency and reduce emissions during interim operations
- Exhaust system reduces NOx emissions through selective catalytic reduction
- Twin propellers designed to reduce underwater radiated noise
- Designed to be fully accessible without elevators, reducing energy consumption, operating cost and complexity
- Vessel completely outfitted with LED lighting
- Heat recovery system uses waste thermal energy to heat vessel
- Low friction and biofouling resistant hull coating reduces fuel consumption
The Island Class ferries will service the following routes:
- Powell River – Texada Island: Island Discovery
- Port McNeill – Alert Bay – Sointula: Island Aurora
- Campbell River – Quadra Island (two ferries) in 2022
- Nanaimo Harbour – Gabriola Island (two ferries) in 2022
Until electric charging technology matures and is available in in quantities required, BC Ferries will operate in interim on low sulphur diesel hybrid system.
Source: Maasmond maritime/ BC ferries