British shipbuilding firm Coastal Workboats, which positions itself as a sustainable shipyard, has agreed to collaborate with maritime energy storage specialist EST-Floattech on battery technology. 

Coastal Workboats is contracted to build an Electric-Landing Utility Vessel (E-LUV) at its Stornaway shipyard, on Scotland’s Western Isles. The Dutch battery technology specialist will provide the vessel’s battery system and its shore-based charging technology. 

The sustainable shipyard and battery contract was made possible by a Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition (CMDC) grant of £6m ($7.4m) from the UK Government. 

The E-LUV is the result of Coastal Workboats’ successful grant bid and will be the UK’s first electric commercial work vessel. It will be both a Ro-Ro and dry cargo transportation vessel and its first operation will be a twice-daily ferry service close to Coastal Workboats Scotland’s Stornaway base.  

Its demonstration voyages will be approximately 45-minute journeys between West Burrafirth and Papa Stour in the Shetlands. 

Alongside the onboard battery, EST-Floattech will supply 1.200 kWh of the Octopus High Energy battery system, to be placed in a 20-foot container, to support the charging of Coastal Workboats’ E-LUV vessel.

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EST-Floattech said it would work with MJR Power & Automation and Renew Marine to install the shore power technology, a version of which could also be installed onboard the vessel to extend its battery-propelled range. 

“We are proud to be contributing to lowering emissions in the maritime industry in the UK, working hand in hand with Coastal Workboats to bring sustainable, high-performance energy solutions to the forefront,” EST-Floattech’s Jelle Meindertsma said 

“Our collaboration on the E-LUV is a testament to our shared commitment towards a more environmentally responsible maritime future,” he added. 

Coastal Workboats’ Chief Engineering Manager Luke Parnell said: “Our attraction to the Octopus Series quite simply comes down to safety. 

“EST-Floattech has produced a class-approved product that brings to market a level of safety unseen previously. In particular, the passive nature of the heat dissipation system represents a marked step forward in safety, particularly for an application in the marine environment. Given our primary concern is safety above all, the Octopus was the perfect choice for us,” Parnell noted.