Hurtigruten said two 530-passenger expedition ships it has
ordered will be capable of running on electric power for a limited length of time.
The Norwegian line said the capability was being developed
for environmentally sensitive polar areas, and could also be used in settings
such as fjords.
“To be able to sail using only electrical power is not only
a great benefit for the environment, but it will also enhance the impact of
experiencing nature for the guests,” Hurtigruten CEO Daniel Skjeldam said. “Picture
sailing into a fjord silently without any form of emissions.”
Hurtigruten said the first of the new ships being built at
Kleven Yards in Norway will be equipped with a Rolls-Royce hybrid system with
an auxiliary electric engine that can propel the ship for 15 to 30 minutes at a
time. The first ship is due for delivery in 2018.
The company said the second ship, due in 2019, will have a
full-fledged hybrid engine that can electrically power the entire ship for
longer periods of time and longer distances.