Incat Tasmania is building a new battery-powered large vessel for South American ferry operator Buquebus
Incat Tasmania is preparing to deliver the world’s first large, lightweight zero-emission ferry, which will operate for South American brand Buquebus from 2025.
Incat originally designed the ferry to operate on LNG but is working to replace the power plant with a battery-electric solution, as per Buquebus’s request.
“This is a unique opportunity for Incat,” said Craig Clifford, managing director at Incat. “Whilst there are always challenges if you change any aspect of the design of a ship part way through a build, in simple terms, this is just swapping one method of propulsion for another. It will, however, have significant environmental benefits and open up a whole new market for these types of vessels.”
The vessel will be 130 metres long and will accommodate 2,100 passengers and 226 vehicles.
“The customer wants this to happen, Incat wants this to happen, and whilst there are matters to be finalised, I am extremely confident that we can deliver this ground-breaking ship,” said Robert Clifford, chairman and founder of Incat Group. “Obviously, there needs to be sufficient energy supply in the ports that the ship would visit but we understand that this is progressing positively. The batteries and electric motors are being worked through with our suppliers, to ensure they can deliver the technology required in the timeframe we need them.
Peter Gutwein, strategic adviser at Incat, said: “The world wants large, lightweight zero-emission ships and we are already scaling up our workforce and production facility in readiness for what will be a significant expansion. It will be a win-win for both the environment and for investment in long-term skilled jobs in Tasmania.”