The world´s first fully electric high speed craft “Medstraum” is will soon be operating a multi-stop commuter route in Rogaland, Norway.

Medstraum (Co-current) is historic as the first battery-only vessel of its size to pass the magical 23 knots limit, which is required to be classed as a high-speed craft. In this case, it has been done by good margin. During tests, the vessel has achieved a speed of 27 knots. This pilot vessel is a result of the EU-funded TrAM project, instigated by Maritime CleanTech, led by Kolumbus, and partly funded by Rogaland County Council. The TrAM project aimed to develop a zero-emission fast-going passenger vessel through advanced modular production.

The construction of MS "Medstraum" started at Fjellstrand shipyard in Hardanger Norway in the early summer of 2021. The catamaran has room for approximately 150 passengers, is 31 meters long and nine meters wide. It is equipped with two electric motors and a battery with a capacity of 1.5MWh and a charging power of over 2MW. The vessel is designed for a service speed of 23 knots.

Medstraum will replace the traditional fossil fueled fast ferry, and the reduction of CO2-emissions is equivalent to 60 busses each year. That is approximately 1,500 tonnes of CO2.

– Medstraum is already stirring great interest internationally. The maritime industry across the world is now looking at what we achieve in our maritime cluster. This could really be the start of a new adventure for our industry. Not only have the project partners developed and demonstrated a new and emission-free propulsion system that can maintain higher speeds than before, but we have also adopted completely new modular design- and construction methods that will revolutionise the way we build boats in the future, says Håvard Tvedte, Head of Communications and Public Affairs of Maritime CleanTech, the cluster organisation who initiated the EU-funded TrAM-project.

Ship of the year

At the beginning of September, MS "Medstraum" was awarded the Ship of the Year prize at the maritime and innovation fair SMM in Hamburg.

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