The first vessel of the French shipping company Brittany Ferries powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG), a fuel that significantly limits polluting emissions, was floated on Friday in Flensburg, Germany, before arriving in the English Channel this summer.
The first ship of the French shipping company Brittany Ferries powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG), a fuel that significantly limits polluting emissions, was floated on Friday in Flensburg, Germany, before arriving in the English Channel this summer.
“The largest LNG ferry in Europe”
The Honfleur will be “the first French passenger transport vessel powered by LNG. Above all, it will be the largest and most modern LNG ferry in Europe, ”said Jean-Marc Roué, head of the Breton company, shortly before the vessel was floated at the FSG shipyard (Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft ), in northern Germany. The shipowner wants half of its fleet – which will be made up of twelve ships with the Honfleur – by 2025 to be powered by LNG.
The ferry, still a simple hull, slid along a hold, in front of several hundred people, before reaching the waters of the Flensburg Fjord. The hull will receive its superstructure from Gdansk, Poland over the next few days. It is two mega-blocks as tall as a five-story building.
Fuel of the future
The Honfleur, whose construction began in March and at a cost of 180 million euros, will enter service in July on the Caen-Ouistreham / Portsmouth line, in the south of England, the busiest of the company , with 922,000 passengers and 280,000 cars transported each year.
With its 187 meters long, the Honfleur will be able to carry nearly 1,680 passengers and will be equipped with 261 cabins, two cinemas, restaurants and shops. It will be able to carry 130 freight trailers or 550 cars and 64 freight trailers.
LNG is a fuel of the future in maritime transport, with an almost total reduction in sulfur emissions, but also nitrogen oxides (NOx). It also reduces carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 20 to 25%. The International Maritime Organization (IMO) will limit the sulfur content of heavy fuel oil to 0.5% from January 1, 2020, against 3.5% currently.
The company based in Roscoff, in Finistère, employs between 2,400 and 3,200 people depending on the season and annually transports 2.7 million passengers, 900,000 cars and 205,000 trucks between France, the United Kingdom, Ireland and the Spain.