Finferries joins the innovative autonomous Maritime Ecosystem
Finferries, the market leader in ferry and commuter ferry operations in Finland, joins One Sea Ecosystem. The company aims to introduce autonomous technologies into their operations. By joining One Sea, Finferries become partners with the forerunners of maritime autonomy. The DIMECC led ecosystem is happy to welcome the new partner with invaluable experience in maritime traffic to the ecosystem.
Finferries operates in coastal and inland waterways of Finland providing ferry and commuter ferry transportation serving annually 10 million customers and 4 million vehicles. Finferries’ goal is to modernize their fleet. A part of that work is incorporating latest technologies on their newbuildings, as well as their existing fleet. The technologies are expected to increase the safety of the passengers, as well as ensure the best possible services to the customers living in remote locations accessible only by ferries. The focus is also heavily on developing the concept of clean shipping.
“As a modern ferry operator joining the One Sea Ecosystem was the next natural step for Finferries. We were the first to bring an environmentally friendly battery hybrid ferry to Finland and our vessels have also been used as a test environment in the AAWA-project. We are proud to take part in collaborations where cutting-edge technology is utilized to improve the safety and sustainability in maritime operations”, says Mats Rosin, the CEO of Finferries.
Chairman of the One Sea Management Board, Mr. Sauli Eloranta is thrilled about the new ecosystem members. “The new partner brings in a new dimension to the ecosystem, representing business areas that are crucial for the ecosystem. It is vital to have ship owner’s perspective within the ecosystem work.
The One Sea ecosystem, founded in 2016, represents exceptionally advanced co-creation where global leaders in their industries work to reach their joint goal of autonomous traffic. The founding partners in the One Sea – Autonomous Maritime Ecosystem are: ABB, Cargotec (MacGregor and Kalmar), Ericsson, Meyer Turku, Rolls-Royce, Tieto and Wärtsilä. The association of Finnish Marine Industries supports the work, and the Finnish funding agency TEKES has invested in the ecosystem. The leader of One Sea is DIMECC.
The Minister of Transport and Communications christened Finland’s first electric ferry
Finferries’ new ferry, Elektra, was named today, 29 May, at River Aura in Turku. Invited guests and media were present at the christening ceremony. The traditional christening was performed by the vessel’s godmother, Minister of Transport and Communications Anne Berner.
“It is a great honour to have Minister of Transport and Communications Berner as godmother of our largely electrically-powered vessel. This confirms that our investment in a new environmentally friendly technology is appreciated,” says Mats Rosin, CEO of Finferries.
Elektra’s power source consists primarily of batteries that are charged with shore power each time the vessel calls to port. In addition to the batteries, the ferry runs on back-up diesel power that can be put to use in such circumstances as challenging ice conditions or in the case of a power cut. The design criteria have emphasised operational reliability, which results in a ferry that has the latest technology and produces a high-quality basic service.
The construction on the Elektra began in April last year at the Polish CRIST S.A. shipyard. Finferries is pleased with the cooperation with the vessel’s supplier. The finish on the car deck details alone is enough to demonstrate that the shipyard has maintained a high level of quality in its work.
The modern technology required of the electric ferry was provided by Siemens.
“It was safe to invest in new technology with a cooperative partner that already presented proof of a functioning electric ferry,” states Mats Rosin, referring to the electric ferry Ampere that traffics Norway and whose technology also comes from Siemens.
The electrically powered hybrid ferry is considerably larger than previous road ferries. Elektra measures 97.92 metres long and 15.20 metres wide and has a capacity for 90 passenger cars. Traffic along the Parainen–Nauvo route will begin in June 2017. The arrival of the new vessel will not affect the timetables for the route.
Finferries welcomes everyone aboard on its new generation vessel!
New technology takes Finferries’ hybrid vessel to international forefront of environmentally friendly ferries
This spring, Finferries signed a contract with the Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment on improving the services involving the Parainen–Nauvo route. The improvement in the quality of services will be actualised through a new, environmentally friendly ferry. An energy‑efficient newbuilding, larger than the current vessels on the route, will begin operation in summer 2017.
“We want to offer our passengers new equipment that will guarantee that the reliability and safety in what we do will be better than ever. Also, our investment in a low-emission hybrid vessel will be a concrete way to take the environment into consideration,” says Finferries CEO Mats Rosin.
Battery packs charged by shore power and a diesel electricity generator alongside them as a backup will first and foremost serve as an energy source for the newbuilding. The design criteria also emphasise operational safety so that the result will be a vessel that will benefit from the newest technology and will provide high-quality basic services.
Finferries has ordered the newbuilding from the Polish shipyard CRIST S.A. in Gdynia. Finferries had sent calls for tender to 13 shipyards, and the ones that made it to the finishing line were in Finland, Germany , Norway and Poland.
“I am extremely satisfied that the long and thorough selection process is now finished. We’ve chosen Crist to deliver the vessel because of the competitive price and their ability to provide us with a vessel of excellent quality. Siemens will provide the new technology for the ship. Siemens is a company that has plenty of experience and an excellent reputation with a similar application on a Norwegian ferry,” Mats Rosin states.
"Electric ferries offer a great new technology to provide sustainable, efficient and reliable transportation to the Finnish archipelago. This is another important step in protecting the Baltic Sea", Siemens Osakeyhtiö CEO Janne Öhman says.
The forthcoming hybrid vessel for the Parainen–Nauvo route is a natural expansion to the energy-efficient Stella on the Korppoo–Houtskari–Norrskata route. Finferries has already begun development work involving the use of alternative energy sources alongside traditional fuel on the vessels. The newbuilding has furthermore been put into a class of ferries that it will be able to operate in other areas and routes as well.
The electric hybrid ferry will be approximately 90 metres long, 16 metres wide and will be able to hold a maximum of 90 cars. The operation on the Parainen–Nauvo route will begin in summer 2017.
Concrete development for Finferries with customer survey
Finferries operates both commuter vessels and ferries on over 40 routes all around Finland. Over 10 million passengers travel by water throughout the year, and summer is the high season for Finnferries.
Last year, Finferries conducted a customer satisfaction survey on all its routes in cooperation with Innolink Research Oy. The feedback received gave rise to both a website renovation and expediting the publication of traffic news. One of the biggest requests was map services, which have been available on the newly renovated webpages since last summer. These map services will allow for the easy search of routes whether travelling in Finnish Lakeland or the coastal areas. Finferries also renewed its system for publishing traffic news so that updates on unusual circumstances will be distributed in real-time as soon as possible.
“This customer survey provided us with clear indicators to guide us in developing our operations. It was also amazing to discover that through the customer survey, our staff received a great deal of positive feedback and clear evidence that their work is appreciated all throughout Finland. We would like to warmly thank all those who took the survey,” says Finferries Communications Manager Jutta Valkeinen.
“It’s wonderful that Finferries scored well in factors which the respondents felt to be the most important. The feeling of safety en route and feeling that you can trust the crew especially ranked high amongst those factors. Furthermore, the passengers gave an average score of 8.4 (on a scale of 1 to 10), which says that you can trust Finnferries,” assesses Katja Rantakeisu, Research Manager of Innolink Research Oy.
Further information: Communications Manager Jutta Valkeinen, email@example.com, tel. +358 400 406 614
Christening of oil recovery and commuter vessel Otava at Uusikaupunki shipyard
The Uki Workboat shipyard started production on the newbuilding project in May 2013. This new kind of commuter vessel can be used in possible oil recovery tasks while operating in the archipelago. Otava will operate on the Kotka–Pyhtää route whose distance and challenging icy conditions impose special requirements on the vessel’s performance. The vessel was designed to travel in ice 30cm thick and the ship’s frame was moulded to minimise fuel consumption even through higher waves.
The vessel is equipped with the latest technology and is 34.9 metres long and 9 metres wide. The draught of Otava for commuting is 2.4 metres and 2.65 metres for oil recovery tasks. The vessel has a capacity of 100 passengers and can also transport a lorry or eight cars.
“We are happy that Finferries chose Uki Workboat to manufacture the vessel after extensive competitive bidding. In addition to price, excellent know-how in building archipelago and oil recovery vessels and excellent user experience on vessels built at the shipyard tipped the scales in favour of Uki Workboat,” says Uki Workboat Managing Director Harri Putro.
“People have been waiting a long time for the new commuter vessel for the Kotka archipelago. You can say that Otava was made possible by a mutual spirit of local residents and authorities. The lengthy contract for the Kotka–Pyhtää route, tendered by the ELY Centre for Southwest Finland, made way for a €7.5 million investment for the newbuilding. Our new vessel shows that safety and environmental factors are not taken lightly when it comes to developing the archipelago and other waterway areas,” says Finferries CEO Mats Rosin.