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Editor in chief: Angelo Scorza
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02/07/18 11:47

ABB to push Virgin Voyages cruiseships

The Swiss multinational to supply the complete electric power and propulsion package for the three newbuildings under construction at Fincantieri’s Sestri Ponente shipyard

ABB will supply the complete electric power and propulsion package for Virgin Voyages’ new fleet.

The first cruiseship, due for delivery in 2020, will be the first of a fleet of three innovative vessels designed and built with environmental responsibility in mind; each of the 110,000 GT units will feature ABB’s Azipod® propulsion, a gearless steerable propulsion system where the electric drive motor is in a submerged pod outside the ship hull. Azipod® propulsion has become an industry standard in the cruise segment, with the proven ability to cut fuel consumption by 15% compared to traditional shaftline propulsion systems.

Two Azipod® XO units, with a combined propulsion power of 32 MW (43,000 HP) will propel each of the three ships. In addition to highest energy efficiency, Azipod® XO units, where “X” stands for “next generation” and “O” for open water operation, provide high maneuverability and minimal noise for increased passenger comfort. Each vessel will feature ABB’s complete electric power plant concept – a solution encompassing electricity generators, main switchboards, distribution transformers and a remote control system for maneuvering the Azipod® units from the bridge. The combination of Azipod® propulsion and ABB’s electric power plant concept makes it possible to configure all of the equipment for optimized performance, resulting in increased efficiency and lower emissions.

In line with ABB’s “Electric. Digital. Connected.” approach that envisages shipping’s digital and connected future, these vessels will have the capability to connect to the ABB AbilityTM Collaborative Operations Centers infrastructure. This network uses remote equipment monitoring and data analytics to enable predictive maintenance, planned interventions or even remote technical support.

The 4-stroke engines powering the electricity generators (4 per vessel) will be equipped with ABB’s TPL-C turbochargers, designed to handle demanding operations and consistently chosen for large cruise ships for their reliability and efficiency.

The ships will be 278 meters long and 38 meters wide, and accommodate 2,700 passengers and 1,150 crew. All three will be built at Fincantieri’s Sestri Ponente shipyard in Genoa, Italy, with the second and third vessel deliveries scheduled for 2021 and 2022 respectively.

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