Austal unveils new range of electric-powered high-speed ferries

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Austal Australia has launched the VOLTA series of electric-powered high-speed ferry solutions that combine all new, lightweight, low-resistance hull forms, specifically designed, tested and optimised for electric-power propulsion, with state-of-the-art lithium ion batteries.

The launch of the VOLTA series was heralded by the introduction of the Passenger Express 46V, a fully electric-powered 46 metre catamaran ferry designed to provide an environmentally friendly, economical vessel ideal for metropolitan, inland waterway commuter ferry services.

Austal CEO Paddy Gregg described the new VOLTA series of high-speed ferries as ‘the future of commercial maritime transport’.

He said the company plans to expand the VOLTA series through the development of additional models for both commercial and defence applications, including autonomous vessels; and continue research and development into emerging propulsion technology, to deliver zero emission marine solutions globally.

“For any high speed vessel and even more so for electric-powered ferries, optimising vessel weight and performance is essential – driving not just operating costs, but the size and upfront purchase cost of the batteries and the charging system,” Mr Gregg continued.

“With Austal’s unique VOLTA series of custom designed and built vessels, customers may achieve a lower total cost of ownership without compromising on performance or capability. Operators can reliably and profitably sail on schedule all day, every day.

“Austal’s VOLTA series also future-proofs an operators’ fleet by introducing environmentally friendly, ‘green’ technology that already meets widely anticipated, low or zero-emission targets for public transport vehicles and operators, worldwide.”

Video: Austal YouTube channel