Schottel propels all-aluminium ferry


The all-aluminium ‘Nairana’ Photo: SchottelThe all-aluminium ‘Nairana’ Photo: Schottel



Schottel is to provide propulsion solutions for a new all-aluminium ferry designed by Australian shipbuilder Richardson Device Marine for Sealink Tasmania.

The Nairana’s unique construction reduces weight, thus reducing fuel consumption and ensuring excellent manoeuvrability over longer distances. The ferry is fitted with four Schottel Rudderpropellers type SRP 100 (200 kW each) and a second structurally identical sister ship is currently under construction at RDM, scheduled to enter service in March 2021.

“The brief was to provide two unique, new vessels that are highly manoeuvrable to facilitate rapid turnaround times, have multiple engines for redundancy, and are economical. Overall, they needed to be uncomplicated and reliable,” explained Roger Janes, Sales and Marketing Manager of RDM. ”By installing Schottel Rudderpropellers, the challenge was enthusiastically met and successfully overcome.”

The azimuth thrusters, driven by diesel engines, rotate 360 degrees and can be exchanged while the vessel is afloat. The double-ended ferry does not have to turn round and can operate on two propulsion units during off-peak periods, further reducing operating costs.

The 44.9m long, 3.6m wide Nairana has a total capacity of 36 cars and 192 passengers and runs between Kettering, south of Hobart and Bruny Island. Speeds of 12 knots instead of the current 8 knots will allow for more crossings per hour, easing traffic flow burden to the island.

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