New Silversea ships to use fuel cells, LNG and batteries

New Silversea ships to use fuel cells, LNG and batteries

Silversea Cruises’ new ‘Project Evolution' vessels will be the first cruise ships to use fuel cells to provide 100 per cent of their power while berthed in port, eliminating all emissions.

The vessels will run on a hybrid solution comprising a trio of power sources, which were developed in partnership with shipbuilder Meyer Werft. They include cruise industry’s first large-scale, hydrogen-based fuel cell system, which supplement the main power supply and carry the ship’s total hotel load (up to four megawatts of power).

The other elements of the hybrid solution include a bank of batteries to optimise the overall ship power system and save fuel, as well as dual-fuel engines primarily powered by LNG. The LNG system will emit less carbon dioxide and 97 per cent fewer particulates than normal fuel oil used on ships.

The hybrid technology will completely eliminate emissions in ports and allow Project Evolution to achieve a 40 per cent overall reduction in its greenhouse gas emissions per double occupancy compared to Silversea’s previous class of ships. The ship class is also expected to achieve an Energy Efficiency Design Index rating 25 per cent higher than applicable International Maritime Organization requirements.

“Silversea's newest ship class is a significant leap forward in our commitment to sustainable ship design and our journey to reduce our environmental footprint," said Richard Fain, chairman and CEO of Silversea’s parent company Royal Caribbean Group. "We first announced our fuel cell ambitions several years ago. Through dedication and perseverance, we are now proud to introduce the first ship with large-scale fuel cell technology capable of achieving emission-free port operations."

"Incorporating fuel cells into our ships now is one example of how Royal Caribbean Group is preparing to use new technologies as we move to a non-carbon-based future. This pioneering approach builds on our spirit of innovation."

Silversea’s Project Evolution ships will also be equipped with a newly developed Micro Auto Gasification System to reduces onboard waste and lower emissions associated with incineration.

Meyer Werft will also make efforts to lower the carbon footprint associated with building the ships, the first of which is expected to debut in summer 2023.

“Being at the forefront of sustainable shipping design and innovation is a testament to our team's drive for continuous improvement," said Roberto Martinoli, president and CEO of Silversea Cruises. "These advancements support our desire to showcase the world to our guests and to do so in a mindful and environmentally responsible way."

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Rebecca Gibson
By Rebecca Gibson
22 October 2021

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