The reveal ceremony for Queen Beetle was attended by over 100 guests (Image: Austal)
Shipbuilder Austal has revealed its new 83-metre trimaran ferry Queen Beetle, which is currently under construction for Japanese operator JR Kyushu Jet Ferry at the company’s Henderson South shipyard in Australia.
Queen Beetle was designed and constructed by Austal Australia and is due to be launched in March 2020. The vessel will be delivered to the operator in June 2020 before entering service between Busan, South Korea and Fukuoka, Japan in July. She will be the first high-speed trimaran ferry to operate in Japan.
The unveiling ceremony was attended by over 100 guests, including Kim Beazley, the Governor of Western Australia, and Masayuki Mizuno, president of JR Kyushu Jet Ferry.
“We’re very proud to be introducing this new Austal trimaran to one of the most technologically advanced and mature markets in the world,” said David Singleton, chief executive of Austal. “This stunning new ship will truly transform the fast-ferry journey between Japan and South Korea, offering significantly improved seakeeping and an exceptional onboard experience for passengers and crew.”
The ferry will have capacity for 502 passengers and 20 crew across two passenger decks and will reach speeds of up to 37 knots. The customised interior was designed by Eiji Mitooka of Don Design Associates and includes two classes of seating, compartments for groups and families and all-access spaces for wheelchairs and prams.
“JR Kyushu Jet Ferry is very excited about the imminent launch, completion and delivery of the Queen Beetle trimaran and we look forward to commencing services in Japan, in July,” said Toshihiko Aoyagi, president of the JR Kyushu Railway Company. “The reveal ceremony has assured us that Queen Beetle will be the most impressive ship in our fleet.”
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