ABB to provide Azipod electric propulsion for eco-friendly superyacht
Debut contract with Dutch luxury yacht builder Oceanco on Azipod technology installation project paves the way for broader cooperation on sustainable electric propulsion in a market expected to exceed EUR 8 billion by 2025.
Specified for a superyacht built to the highest sustainability standards, ABB’s integrated project scope covers the supply of two 2.5MW Azipod units, together with propulsion drives and controls.The Azipod system is well-known for superior fuel efficiency and maneuverability over conventional setups across a broad variety of vessel types from cruise ships to tankers and ferries. The scalability of Azipod propulsion means that it is equally well-suited to the environmentally conscious superyacht sector, a market where owners also place special value on the highest comfort standards brought by lower noise and vibrations.
Azipod technology is based on a steerable propulsion system whose electric drive is contained in a submerged pod outside the ship’s hull rotating through 360ο degrees. Launched three decades ago, Azipod propulsion has become an industry benchmark for environmentally-friendly vessel technology, with its proven ability to cut fuel consumption by up to 20% compared to traditional shaftline propulsion systems. “With Oceanco’s ultimate goal of zero impact on the environment, we are delighted to collaborate with ABB Marine & Ports, whose leading-edge technologies are known for delivering the sustainability benefits increasingly sought by superyacht owners”, says Remco Jurgens, Naval Architect at Oceanco. The two companies are assessing the potential for the integration of complete power and propulsion systems in future projects, he added. “We are very pleased to have closed this first deal with Oceanco, and we look forward to collaborating in the future. Our two companies share an ethos of sustainable business development that provides a strong foundation for our relationship”, comments Thomas Hackman, Market Development Manager Superyachts at ABB Marine & Ports.
Both companies have recently underlined their commitment to sustainable development and ambitious targets that will also help decarbonise the marine sector. As part of its Sustainability strategy 2030 launched in November 2020, ABB will achieve carbon neutrality across its own operations and will support its customers in reducing their annual CO2 emissions by at least 100Mt, equivalent to the annual emissions of 30 million combustion cars. Meanwhile, the superyacht builder has launched the Oceanco NXT initiative to collaborate with partners across different business sectors with the ultimate aim of designing and building zero-emission superyachts. “We see ABB as a leading supplier and an essential partner for future developments”, states Mr Jurgens. “Efficient energy management systems, energy storage, and advanced propulsion systems are considered fundamental to achieving our goal.”
An additional benefit for Oceanco and its client is ABB’s worldwide support network, providing round-the-clock advice and the capability to leverage the ABB Ability Remote Diagnostics System for equipment monitoring and troubleshooting. Today, with over 1,000 ships connected to ABB Ability Collaborative Operations worldwide, digital services are at the core of supporting vessels from shore. ABB experts monitor onboard systems, coordinate equipment diagnostics and offer maintenance services 24/7 from eight ABB Ability Collaborative Operations Centers around the globe.