A six-meter long model of the final design of the autonomous and zero emission container vessel “Yara Birkeland” was launched in SINTEF Ocean’s sea laboratory in Trondheim, Norway, on 28 September.
In May, Yara announced the partnership with technology company Kongsberg to build the world’s first electric container ship.
The vessel will be built and put to use late 2018, as part of Yara International’s logistics value chain at the plant in Porsgrunn, Norway. The project is a collaboration between Yara and KongsbergGruppen, a Norwegian technology company.
The cutting edge, six meter long and 2.4 tonnes heavy model with technology destined for the real ship, including a fully working thruster system designed by Kongsberg, will now undergo comprehensive testing at SINTEF’s test tanks before construction of the full-scale vessel starts. The ship yard will be selected by the end of 2017.
“Initial tests of the model were successful, proving both concept and the technology,” says Geir Håøy, President and CEO of Kongsberg. “The testing at SINTEF Ocean marks an important milestone in the development. This vessel is important for the entire maritime industry, and Yara deserves praise for their initiative and commitment. Yara Birkeland is the start of a major contribution to fulfilling national and international environmental impact goals, and will be a global milestone for seaborne transportation.”
Yara International also informed that it has been granted USD 16.7 million by the Norwegian government enterprise ENOVA for the Yara Birkeland, covering about 30% of the construction.
“For the private sector, it is essential to have the government’s support when we develop new technology and deliver bold innovations,” noted Svein Tore Holsether, President and CEO of Yara.