Global technology company Siemens has been selected to provide a complete range of electro-technical solutions, which includes remote access monitoring system EcoMain, for Finland-based company FinFerries’ battery-powered car ferry.

Siemens will also provide a WiFi solution to connect with the shore-based charging stations controlled by the ferry’s energy management system in order to realise automated fast charging.

Said to be the first battery-powered car ferry in Finland, the vessel has the capacity to carry up to of 90 cars and will be procured from Polish shipyard Crist by FinFerries.

Once operational, the environmentally-friendly ferry, with a length of 90m and width of 16m, is expected to develop the transport between the 1.6km long routes from Nauvo to Parainen in the Turku Archipelago.

Service of the ferry is scheduled to start next year.

To be equipped with Siemens electric propulsion system BlueDrive PlusC, the ferry will also feature an energy storage system, variable speed drive technology for the propellers and an integrated alarm and monitoring system.

The ship is said to require minimal operational costs, maintenance and repair cost savings as well as better control and safety through its energy management and thruster control systems.

The ferry’s energy storage system is expected to be charged at each side of the crossing, with a shore connection to the local grid.

"Siemens is a company that has plenty of experience and an excellent reputation with a similar application on the Norwegian ferry."

In order to cope up with the harsh winter conditions in Finland, the ship might use a diesel engine and operate as a plug-in hybrid vehicle, to support the onboard batteries that will serve as an extra thrust when breaking and travelling through ice.

FinFerries CEO Mats Rosin said: "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.

"It is a company that has plenty of experience and an excellent reputation with a similar application on the Norwegian ferry."

Previously, Siemens provided the complete electric propulsion system and established charging stations with lithium-ion batteries which are charged from hydro power to the first electrical car and passenger ferry, called Ampere, of the world, reports The Maritime Executive.

Image: A ferry crossing a body of water. Photo: courtesy of Siemens AG