As we announced back in the summer, our automated mooring technology, MoorMaster™, will be integrated with another of our innovations – Alternative Maritime Power (AMP) – to create a single system that will first moor and then connect a passenger ferry to electrical power to charge its batteries.
We’ve supplied MoorMaster™ units to ports and locks all over the world – Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, and Oman for example; and we’ve pioneered innovative AMP systems that are used across Asia, Europe and North America. But we’ve never integrated both technologies for the same application.
“This has never been done before: an integrated system that incorporates mooring and shore power connection with this degree of automation is entirely unique,” says Sofus Gedde-Dahl, Managing Director of Cavotec Norge A/S.
The integration of the two technologies will ensure the safe and quick mooring of the vessel, and the charging of its batteries, while passengers and cars disembark and board the vessel in just ten minutes.
The 80m-long ferry – a battery-powered catamaran operated by Norled and due to enter service in 2015 – will carry around 120 cars and 360 passengers, and will make 17 crossings of the Sogne Fjord between Lavik and Oppedal in Norway daily.
The MoorMaster™ units will be operated by our hand-held radio remote controls used by the ship’s captain from the bridge of the vessel.
Once secure, the mooring system will signal to the shore power unit, and a laser sensor will then guide an electrical connector to a hatch in the side of the vessel, connect to the ship’s battery and start charging.
Mooring at the touch of a button
MoorMaster™ is a vacuum-based system that eliminates the need for conventional mooring lines. Remote controlled vacuum pads recessed in, or mounted on the quayside or pontoons, moor and release vessels in seconds.
Since its introduction in 1998, it has performed more than 70,000 mooring operations (as at August 2013) at passenger ferry, bulk and container handling, Ro-Ro and lock applications all over the world.
Given the possibilities that this uniquely innovative application offers automation applications globally, we certainly hope to see more hushed, seamless ferry services plying not just the fjords of Norway, but anywhere where ports want safe, smooth, efficient and sustainable operations.