The Solidor 5 is a second JumboCat 60 from the Norwegian shipyard Fjellstrand purchased by French Company Emeraude Lines. The NKr185 million catamaran operates between Channel Islands of Jersey and Guernsey, and St Malo on the French mainland. It replaces the operator’s first JumboCat 60 vessel, Solidor 3.
The Solidor 5 is the latest evolution of Fjellstrand’s JumboCat 60 design that began with the Solidor 3. The Nordic Jet and Baltic Jet were delivered to Nordic Jet Line in 1998 and 1999 respectively, and Nasser Travel was delivered to AmcoTravel in 1999. The Solidor 5, however, is specifically designed for Emeraude Lines, with new features that were absent in previous JumboCat 60 vessels. These include three crew cabins, an advanced motion dampening system and an increase in deck height.
The Solidor 5 has an overall length of 60m and an overall beam of 16.9m. Its draught is 2.7m or 3.4m, including the motion dampening system. It has a deadweight of 135t.
The interior features an atrium dome and large windows on either side. The premier class lounge, with its panoramic view, is located at the front of the vessel while the standard class area lies towards the stern. The premier and standard class lounges feature aircraft-style seating. The deck head height is 3.5m, compared with a height of 2.5m on previous JumboCat 60 designs.
There is a duty-free shop, cafeteria and bar towards the stern of the ferry. The Solidor 5 is designed to carry up to 60 cars, or two buses with 48 cars, along with 450 passengers. Vehicles board the vessel from a two-lane ramp located aft. The main marine evacuation system liferaft was supplied by the Norwegian group, NorSafe Selantic. Other safety systems include a Novenco HiPress sprinkler and a CO2 system.
The catamaran’s propulsion comes from a pair of Caterpillar 3618 engines, each with an output of 7,200kW. These are linked to a ZF 53000 NR gearbox, which in turn drives a Kamewa 112 SII waterjet with a seven-bladed impeller. The shaft is provided by Centa. This package gives a service speed of approximately 36 knots at full power and a deadweight of 100t.
The St Malo Gulf area is characterised by rough sea conditions – especially in winter months, often reaching gale force six to seven. An important part of the Solidor 5 design, therefore, is an improved motion dampening system (MDS). This essentially consists of a titanium A-foil, which is better suited hydrodynamically to speeds in excess of 35km than the characteristic T-foil systems employed on other, slower vessels. Located forward, this A-foil not only improves the ride, but also reduces noise at the front of the vessel.
This system was developed jointly by the Swedish company Light Craft Design and Fjellstrand. Light Craft Design subsidiary Marine Technology Development constructed the A-foil in Russia from a special type of titanium. The Solidor 5 is the first vessel anywhere in the world to have this system installed. Instead of trim tabs, the motion-dampening package also incorporates interceptors aft, which do not require as much power to operate.
The ferry is classified by DNV with the notation +IAI HSLC, Car Ferry ‘A’, R2.
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