WASALINE can truly be said to have succeeded in its work. It operates between Vaasa, Finland and Umeå, Sweden where the transport of passengers, freight and passenger vehicles has reached new heights. The waves of Kvarken also see more and more passengers travelling for business and leisure in both directions. This busy sea traffic has paved the way for a totally new ship to replace the M/S Wasa Express ferry. The new ship Aurora Botnia isbeing built by Rauma Marine Construction and its maiden voyage is scheduled for May 2021. The new vessel will be the most eco-friendly passenger ferry in the world, equipped with all new technology.
“The Bothnian Corridor between Vaasa and Umeå is considered a crucial route for transporting both people and freight and is the shortest sea route between Finland and Sweden. As an 80 kmsea transport route it offers an eco-friendly alternative to the 800 km route by road. While the current ferry mainly travels the route twice a day, the new ferry will cross the Gulf of Bothnia four times a day in high season”, says Wasaline’s Managing Director Peter Ståhlberg.
THE WORLD’S most energy-efficient passenger ferry is equipped with numerous unique technological solutions. It is designed to be as energy efficient as possible, with a small environmental footprint. It is the first passenger vessel in the world to be built with the DNVGL Clean Design notation, meaning that its emissions will be lower than any limits set by emission standards and its building materials are as eco-friendly as possible.
“The vessel will use LNG as its primary fuel but it will also be able to use LBG (liquefied biogas). This means extremely low emissions. Its batteries will support peak shaving, hotel loads and propulsion when manoeuvring within the ports. The aim is to make the ferry practically emission-free and silent when in harbour”, Ståhlberg explains.
It will also be the first passenger vessel in the world to apply the strictest Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) 2020 stability requirements together with the Stockholm agreement.
WASALINE is owned jointly by the city of Vaasa and the municipality of Umeå. The route between them is the northernmost year-round ferry linein the world, with an ice cover to break through every winter. This is why the new ferry will be built to meet ice class 1A Super.It will also be the first Finnish ferry with no lifeboats, as these will be replaced by escape slides that run down inflatable chutes from the vessel, offering a better solution for winter conditions.