Finnlines’ ro-pax newbuilding programme proceeds well. The second Superstar vessel, Finncanopus, was launched at the China Merchants Jinling Shipyard in Weihai on 30 December. The first, Finnsirius, was launched in August 2022.
The new Superstar class cargo-passenger vessels, i.e. ro-pax vessels, which will enter traffic in 2023, will serve the Naantali–Långnäs–Kapellskär route between Finland, Åland Islands and Sweden.
“Regular and reliable freight traffic in the Baltic Sea is the backbone of the region’s economies and national security of supply. The maritime bridge between Finland and Sweden is one of the three connections in Finland important to trade and industry. Around 90 per cent of the Finnish and Swedish exports and imports are carried seaways. Our service has been very important for our customers. Increasing cargo and passenger capacity and improving passenger comfort on the route will strengthen the service,” says Tom Pippingsköld, President and CEO of Finnlines.
Focus on sustainability
The vessels are as emission-free as possible and the Superstar vessels will be equipped with innovative technology. The air lubrication system creates air bubbles, which reduce friction and hydrodynamic resistance. The onshore power supply will provide an alternative source of energy and it will not be necessary to run auxiliary engines, which reduces emissions and noise. A high-powered battery bank will be charged in port and generate power at sea. Two-speed reduction gears will improve propulsion efficiency and save fuel.
Environmentally friendly oils will be used in bow thrusters, fin stabilizers and in the cargo access equipment.
Green values are also prioritised in the design of the shipboard facilities and services. As an example, lighting and ventilation can be adjusted automatically in the accommodation, which reduces energy consumption. Recycled material is used in furniture. Printed materials, such as menus, travel programmes and price lists, are replaced by digital screens and mobile apps. Furthermore, local suppliers will be favoured, which means shorter transport distances.
“Innovative technologies will ensure that people and goods are transported reliably and sustainably and Finnlines is prepared to comply with new regulations and meet new challenges,” says Tom Pippingsköld.
The new vessels will enter traffic between Finland, Åland Islands and Sweden on the Naantali–Långnäs–Kapellskär route. The vessels will ensure a more sustainable option for travel and transport of freight.
Both vessels have capacity for 1,100 passengers, which is the double compared with the current vessels on the route. Freight capacity will also increase from around 4,000 lane metres to 5,200. The new ro-pax vessels are part of Finnlines’ EUR 500-million investment programme.
Superstar ro-pax vessels/ Finncanopus and Finnsirius
- Estimated entry into traffic in autumn 2023 on the Naantali–Långnäs–Kapellskär route
- Freight capacity 5,200, equivalent to 250 trucks and 200 cars