Norway’s Electric Ferry Is So Impressive That 53 More Were Ordered

MAR 25 2018 BY MARK KANE 17

The first electric ferries – Ampere in Norway (since 2015) and Elektra in Finland (since 2017), have proven their capabilities and operators are now lining up in the queue to purchase more.

Electric ferry Ampere

The Ampere, built by Fjellstrand Shipyar with Siemens and Corvus Energy, decreased emissions by 95% and costs by 80% (compared to standard ferries), as well as noise.

With over a 1 MWh battery, two 450 kW electric motors from Siemens and 1.2 MW fast charging when loading/unloading, it’s an excellent solution for the sea.

According to latest reports, 53 similar ferries were ordered after Ampere led the way.

Here are the specs of the ferry and video featuring Elektra:

Fjellstrand ZeroCat spec

 Source: Electrek

Categories: General


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17 Comments on "Norway’s Electric Ferry Is So Impressive That 53 More Were Ordered"

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That is fast charging 😁. Imagine that in a car. 25 seconds for a full charge. Batteries would pop like popcorn i a blaze of fire, I guess. . If there was nothing stopping the power.

Tesla Semi megacharging is ~1.4 MW. Battery is of similar size. People who say the Semi uses a radical new battery chemistry apparently don’t know about these ferries.

This is only 1C. No need for new xhemistry. Tesla is charging even faster: having about 80kWh the speed is about 1,5C at the beginning…

No mention of range, which I will guess is around 20 nautical miles.

You’re right about the short range (900 kWh for the main engines at full speed gives about a 14 nautical mile range) but most of Norway’s ferries are used for fjord crossings of a couple of nautical miles port to port so that really isn’t a problem.

I calculated 10 knots at 450 kW. I’m not claiming it’s good or bad, it’s just a number to keep in mind for other uses.

There are two 450 kW motors so top speed of 14 knots at 900 kW per hour. They didn’t say how much of that 1mwh was available. At 10 knots operational speed you are probably only using ~60% of what you are at top speed or about 27 nautical miles if the full MWh is available.

Here in the Bay Area most routes are in the 1-5 mile range. With 10-30 minutes in between runs for loading and unloading there is plenty of time between runs to recharge if/when needed. During commute hours they are probably going to operate a lot closer to top speed.

The battery is sized to make a specific crossing. The ferry runs about 20 minutes each trip and has 10 minutes waiting time for unloading and loading at each end. If i remember correctly it can also make the trip with the charging station in one end broken, but after some trips with only charging in one end it would need a bit longer charging time.

If the trip is longer it is just to build it with more batteries and bigger chargers.

This was built with two different charging connector systems at it was a test project. Now there is also induction charging up to 1MW on the market which would probably be an even better solution as charging may start even before it is completely positioned.

That spec sheet says 10 Kts, on Rear Motor Only, hence, good for abot a 2 hour run time, if they missed charging for some reason!

In a few years I’ll have a JD in law, and hopefully pass the bar. It will be great suing the crap out of government entities which drag their feet on replacing diesel based transport with electric. Do you hear me Washington State Department of Transportation? Better hatch a plan to replace those diesel ferries.

Wow. Aren’t you full of yourself? Love the youthful naivete.

Way to be supportive, Dav8or. /s

Scott, I appreciate your enthusiasm. Governmental agencies should be held accountable for not actively taking care of the environment, and affecting people’s health because of the pollution. Go for it!

And not all such Lawyers live long enough to win! They seem to get ‘Accident Prone’, so do be carefull!

What’s the starting and ending SoCs? It’ll be interesting to look at the cycling and longevity of these things if the batteries are capable of only one worst case crossing.

They do 34 trips of 20 minutes a day, and they charge to at least 42% before leaving, if i remember correct they do this to make sure they can return even if the charger on the other side should be broken.

The batteries are heavier pr kWh than typical car batteries becuase they are built to do heavy cycling.

“If the batteries are capable of only one worst case crossing.”

Traveling at an average of 90% of maximum speed and using only 80% of battery capacity would get about 14 nautical miles or 16 miles. That’s a long ferry trip by US standards. Is that common elsewhere? Much more common here would be 4 trips of 4 miles or two full round trips and those could have charging opportunities at each stop. Even if the charger is unavailable at one end you’re still good.

Corvus uses dow kokam, now called xalt energy, cells. 1C charge rates are not fast for these cells.