Alconza is involved in the so-called TrAM project, a ground-breaking European initiative for the design and production of the first high-speed electric ferry to operate in Europe. This project is revolutionary in two different aspects: its zero-emission technology and the production methods, based on advanced modularization, namely, building by modules.
Led by Norwegian mobility company Kolumbus, and with the participation of major companies in the sector like Wärtsilä, Fjellstrand and Servogear, the Basque group Alconza has developed the design and production of the electric motors in charge of propelling the ferry.In its commitment to contributing to the fight against climate change in furtherance of Sustainable Development Goal 13 (“Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts), the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) passed a strategic action plan in 2018 with an aim to reduce the total GHG emissions produced annually by at least 50% from now until 2050, compared with 2008 levels. Moreover, this action plan is in line with the European Union strategy for reducing CO2 emissions. The TrAM project is thus considered strategic and has been allocated funds from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 programme.
Under the name “Medstraum”, this first demonstrator, currently under construction with a view to it being in operation in 2022, will connect the Norwegian cities of Stavanger and Hommersåk for passenger transport. It will likewise be a reference for the next two case studies using the same kind of craft: passenger transport on the Thames (London) and freight transport on Belgium’s canals.
Equipped for the transport of up to 150 passengers, the ship will be 31 metres in length and will be fitted with 2 electric motors and batteries with a capacity of 1.5 MWh. The maximum speed at which it will be able to navigate will be 23 knots (equivalent to approximately 43 km/h). It is a revolutionary vessel in terms of both design and production, and it aims at reducing production costs by 25% and 70%, with respect to engineering.
In pursuit of one of its strategic business lines, Alconza has actively been involved in applications that help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, through its design of solutions tailored to each type of vessel.
In the TrAM project, which is both ambitious and innovative, the craft’s weight, as well as optimization of volume are two key aspects to be considered in this great technological challenge. The vessel has 2 permanent magnet synchronous motors, developed in their entirety by Alconza, to achieve high efficiency with a compact and lightweight motor.
These motors are already being manufactured and await their validation and type-approval from DNV classification society in the very near future in order to meet the objective set at the start of the project.