Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd has been nominated for a prestigious Sustainable Energy Europe Award, as part of EU Sustainable Energy Week, for their innovative work on the Hybrid Ferry project.

The nomination comes after the organisation’s investment into the technology to produce the world’s first two passenger and vehicle roll-on, roll-off ferries to incorporate a low-carbon hybrid system of diesel electric and lithium ion battery power. Both ferries are now in the final stages of being fitted out and will enter service later this year in Scotland.

Out of 224 projects that were submitted for the award, the Hybrid Ferry project is one of only 25 to be shortlisted, with the winners being decided by a high level jury who will meet in the headquarters of the European Commission’s Executive Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation in Brussels.

CMAL’s nomination is in the transport section of the awards and winners will be announced tonight at a ceremony in Brussels hosted by EU Commissioner for Energy, Günther H. Oettinger. The ceremony will launch EU Sustainable Energy Week 2013.

Andrew Flockhart, head of business development for CMAL commented: “We are absolutely delighted to have been nominated for such a prestigious award among so many other deserving projects. We have been working on the Hybrid Ferry project for the past three years and it is very rewarding to have this work recognised by the European Union.

“The innovative hybrid ferry project is not only at the cutting edge of technology, but has continued the proud heritage and tradition of shipbuilding on the Clyde.”

The two hybrid ferries were built at Fergusons Shipbuildres Ltd and the second was launched last week from their shipyard in Port Glasgow, only the second commercial ship to be built and launched on the Clyde in the last five years. The first ferry was launched in December 2012.

Notes to editors:

  1. The MV LOCHINVAR and its sister ship, MV HALLAIG are the world’s first seagoing passenger and vehicle roll-on roll-off ferries to incorporate a low-carbon hybrid system of diesel electric and lithium ion battery power. The technology is cleaner, quieter and cheaper to operate and maintain than ever before. The vessel will be powered by small diesel generator sets, feeding power to a 400 volt switchboard, which will supply power to electric propulsion motors that turn the propellers.
  2. In addition, the ferries, which will be operated by the current operator of the Clyde and Hebrides Ferry Services, CalMac Ferries, are designed for use on many of the short crossing routes around the Clyde and Hebrides and will use some of the most innovative new green technology, including battery banks supplying a minimum of 20% of the energy consumed on board.
  3. Benefits of the hybrid ferries include reduced fuel consumption and impact of CO2 emissions and other pollutants, noise reduction and lower maintenance requirements. The ferries will charge overnight while they are moored on the islands they will serve. It is anticipated future energy from local wind, wave or solar systems will be used to charge the batteries, reducing further the carbon footprint.
  4. Ferguson’s is working alongside Glasgow-based ship design specialists Seatec and electrical specialists Tec-Source to deliver the project.
  5. CMAL (Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd) owns the ferries, ports and harbours and infrastructure necessary for vital ferry services serving the west coast of Scotland and the Clyde Estuary. CMAL are wholly owned by Scottish Ministers. Scottish Government is providing CMAL with a loan of £20m for the procurement of these vessels.

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