AWARDS 2021 | Best FRP Ferry – Sigrid Sigurdsdotter – Brødrene Aa

Best FRP Ferry – Sigrid Sigurdsdotter (Photo: Brodrene Aa)

Best FRP Ferry – Sigrid Sigurdsdotter – Brødrene Aa

Brodrene Aa is globally renowned for its highly efficient, stylish, safe and comfortable FRP ferries that are built to the most modern hi-tech composite standards. These two new 30-metre ferries, while smaller than normal for the company, are otherwise typical. And, as is normal with their vessels, they are versatile, being able to carry a useful freight load along with 95 passengers.

Finely finished and fitted with the best of everything, these vessels clearly show why Brodrene Aa continues to dominate the passenger-only fast ferry market.

“The vessel operates within the island communities off the coast of Nordland, close to the polar circle where the sea can be rough,” Brodrene Aa told Baird Maritime. “The operational conditions in that region therefore demand a vessel special and complex features. It is a challenging task to develop a vessel this multifunctional, as there are a lot of systems that must work together.”

Brodrene Aa cited the Covid-19 pandemic as a challenge in the construction process. As Norway’s tourism industry was also severely impacted by the ensuing health crisis, the impact was also felt by the builder, as the industry represented half of its turnover.

“It obviously hit us hard when the tourism industry slowed down considerably. This will also effect us to some extent in 2022, but we see things turning around and we are very optimistic about the future. We feel we are in a good position to deliver on market trends and customer expectations in the years to come.”

This optimism played a role in the work on Sigrid Sigurdsdotter, and despite what the builder claimed was the added challenge in the calculations, given the complexity of the vessel with new features and solutions to be developed, the ferry was still delivered to the customer as planned.

“Obviously, the increasing focus on sustainability and environmental requirements is affecting how fast ferries are designed and produced,” added Brodrene Aa. “Traditional MGO engines are typically being equipped with SCR systems as NOx-reducing systems. Moving in a low- and zero emission direction, we see an increasing demand for battery or hybrid-driven vessels, not only newbuilds but also reused and converted older vessels.”

The builder also foresees a strong demand for energy-efficient vessels internationally. It views energy efficiency as a key enabler to reach zero emissions and carbon neutrality in combination with optimised drive trains and energy carrying solutions. Such a trend will therefore drive demand in all market segments globally.

Brodrene Aa’s main market segment and product range is within the area of passenger transport, but the company sees that the technology and vessel concepts that it has developed for the passenger segment can easily be adapted into other types of workboats.

“Specifically,” the company told Baird Maritime, “we see an interesting market emerging within offshore wind power. We see a market potential for energy-efficient crewboats that can operate with low or even zero emissions.”

For a list of the 2021 “Best Of” award winners, please click here.

Baird Maritime

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