Aspin Kemp & Associates Inc. (AKA) has been awarded a contract from MAN Energy Solutions (MAN) for their delivery to Damen Gorinchem Holland shipyard. The shipyard placed an order for a hybrid-propulsion solution for the hybrid power system for 2 off dual-fuel/hybrid RoRo ferries for Canadian operator, Seaspan Ferries Corporation. MAN and AKA will deliver MAN 35/44DF dual-fuel engines, fuel gas-supply systems and the main electric systems, including batteries and vessel management system. The vessels will be built at Damen’s Mangalia (Romania) shipyard.

MAN and AKA have been partners since 2017 when MAN’s acquired a 40% stake of AKA. AKA specializes in power supply, energy management and drive systems for marine and industrial applications.

Jason Aspin – CEO of Aspin Kemp & Associates – said: “This order represents a strategic milestone for AKA due to many factors. First off, it showcases the successful MAN and AKA partnership, offering highly innovative, full turn-key systems to operators. Secondly, it is a great opportunity for AKA’s technologies to be deployed in our backyard in Canada with a leading and forward-thinking owner like Seaspan. And lastly, with a technology where AKA has been a first mover in several initiatives for over a decade, this demonstrates that the marine industry is opening to the value that hybrid systems provide in meeting their environmental reduction targets while at the same time reducing their operating costs. We are very excited to see this project kick into full gear and look forward to participating in a successful outcome for all stakeholders!”.

A third partner on the delivery will be MAN Energy Solutions’ fuel-gas specialist, MAN Cryo, which has been charged with supplying the new ferries’ fuel gas-supply system. MAN Cryo offers systems for the storage, distribution and handling of liquefied gases and was fully integrated into the company in 2015.

Project background

Having initially been minded to build repeats from the existing LNG ferries, MAN Energy Solutions – courtesy of a live performance of its MAN 35/44DF engine – demonstrated that a fully-integrated MAN solution could better fulfill the owner’s requirements.

MAN and AKA’s scope of supply for each shipset comprises:

  • 2 × MAN 9L35/44DF Diesel/Gas-gensets
  • 1 × MAN Cryo Fuel Gas Supply System including a 209m³ tank
  • 1 × AKA main electrical system
  • 1 × AKA 2-MWh energy storage systems
  • 1 × AKA low voltage distribution system .
  • 1 x AKA Vessel Management System
  • 1 x AKA Energy Management System

System characteristics

For Seaspan, it was essential to maintain continuous fuel gas operation and avoid any diesel operation due to environmental, ecological operational concerns. The MAN-AKA hybrid-system solution in combination with a fully integrated MAN Cryo FGSS that is perfectly adjusted to the engines gas-supply requirements offers reliable operation in gas mode – especially in view of the ferry segment’s typical frequent and high load-fluctuations – and even with low methane numbers.

High system efficiency and the lowest emissions will be achieved by having just one of two DF engines online at a time and at high load. Being able to operate with a one engine-online-concept facilitates significant savings in terms of vessels fuel costs, running hours and therefore maintenance costs.

The propulsion and battery hybrid system, deeply integrated by AKA, provides adequate propulsion power in all operational modes to serve Seaspan’s requirements to maintain its routes on time, fuel-efficiently, and with a minimal carbon footprint.

Additional AKA hybrid features for this project include peak shaving under rough conditions and maneuvering, enhanced dynamic support during ship acceleration, and zero-emissions operation at the terminal. MAN Energy Solutions will provide Seaspan a ready-for-the-future solution in view of the ecological and economical demands for its fleet-replacement programme and Seaspan´s future successful business.

About Seaspan Ferries

Seaspan RoRo Hybrid Ferry

Graphical rendering from the port side of the new RoRo design (picture courtesy Seaspan)

With over one hundred years of marine-transportation experience, Seaspan Ferries operates a ‘drop trailer’ service eliminating the costs associated with tractors and drivers accompanying trailers during transit to or from Vancouver Island.

Seaspan Ferries provides daily scheduled sailings through three roll-on/roll-off, self-propelled vessels, and four articulated tug-and-barge units.

About MAN Energy Solutions

MAN Energy Solutions enables its customers to achieve sustainable value creation in the transition towards a carbon neutral future. Addressing tomorrow’s challenges within the marine, energy and industrial sectors, we improve efficiency and performance at a systemic level. Leading the way in advanced engineering for more than 250 years, we provide a unique portfolio of technologies. Headquartered in Germany, MAN Energy Solutions employs some 14,000 people at over 120 sites globally. Our after-sales brand, MAN PrimeServ, offers a vast network of service centres to our customers all over the world.

MAN 3544DF engine

Rendering of the MAN 35/44DF engine (image courtesy of MAN Energy Solutions)

About Aspin Kemp & Associates

AKA Switchboard

Picture of typical AKA switchboard

AKA is a systems integrator focusing on innovation, reliability, safety, and energy efficiency in marine, island and micro grid power systems. AKA designs, manufactures, installs and supports innovative power generation, power to process and energy management solutions for marine, Offshore Oil and Gas, and land-based industries to the global market. AKA’s global headquarters is based in Montague, Prince Edward Island, Canada.

AKA achievements include the world’s first hybrid powered harbor assist tug boat, world’s first hybrid offshore drilling system, as well as being a pioneer and world leader in highly reliable and efficient closed bus solutions for vessels utilizing dynamic positioning systems. Over the last 20 year of operation, AKA has shifted the paradigm by offering the world’s most reliable and efficient power and propulsion systems; radically reducing the cost, the environmental footprint and the risk associated with marine operations. A strategic aspect of AKA’s success has been through collaboration with key industry partners. This has allowed AKA to develop and continuously improve technology for power, propulsion and marine / industrial applications where reliability and efficiency are critical operational elements.

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