Color Line’s new hybrid ferry is taking shape

Published 11.04.2019 // 9:08 CET

This summer, the environmentally friendly ship Color Hybrid is set in traffic between Sandefjord and Strømstad. It is the world’s largest plug-in hybrid ship.

We are very proud that Color Line inserts the world’s largest plug-in hybrid ship, says Nina Moland Andersen, sales and marketing manager in Color Line to “Fædrelandsvennen” (newspaper).

When Superspeed was put into operation in Kristiansand in 2008, the ship was new and innovative.

Now Color Line completes a hybrid ship, called Color Hybrid, which may give a glimpse of the type of boat that can travel in the future to Kristiansand-Hirtshals.

The ferry will be operating on Sandefjord-Strømstad already this summer.

Rechargeable hybrid vessel

The hull of the hybrid ship is built at the shipyard Crist in Poland. The ferry is now being outfitted at Ulstein Verft in Ulstein municipality in Møre og Romsdal.

When the ship is docked in Sandefjord, it will be connected to the shore power plant. Then the batteries will be charged. Thus, it will be possible to run on electricity for about one hour – on the way to and from Sandefjord – through vulnerable areas in the archipelago, explains Helge Otto Mathisen, executive vice president for communication and public relations in Color Line.

Jarle Auby, “site manager” and future machine manager at Color Hybrid, emphasizes that the Color Hybrid becomes an environmentally friendly ship.

Energy from cooling water and exhaust will be recycled and used to heat the ship. All waste must be sorted and the ship’s own salad must be produced in a small greenhouse on top of the ship, he says.

The hybrid ship must be capable of being fully charged in 40 minutes.

News for Kristiansand?

Nina Moland Andersen thinks the hybrid ship will set a new standard in view of Color Line’s future ships.

The ship has many modern solutions, which set a standard for how we should think ahead, she says.

– Will the next ship that will transport Kristiansand-Hirtshals be a hybrid ship?

It’s uncertain.

We have 15-20 years left with the current vessels.

How long has Superspeed left over from its lifetime?

Superspeed is as good as new, and can still have between 15 and 20 years left. If a new ship will arrive before that time, it has not been clarified.

Will it be possible to rebuild Superspeed for a hybrid ship?

It is probably more relevant that once a new ship is introduced in the future, Andersen says.

Thousands of horsepower

Color Hybrid is 160 meters long and about 27 meters wide. The vessel will accommodate 2,000 passengers, 500 cars and a crew of 100.

When it comes to the number of horsepower that can be used, it varies according to the type of engine used – the electric motor or the diesel engine.

When we run on batteries we have 3618 horsepower per propeller, that is a total of 7236 horsepower, says Jarle Auby.

Without battery power we have 8442 horsepower per propeller, a total of 16,884 horsepower, he says.

For comparison, Superspeed has 52,000 horsepower.

The battery pack at Color Hybrid is 4700 kilowatt hours (kWh). In comparison, a Tesla has 75 kWh in its battery pack.

Source: Sysla.