French luxury cruise company Ponant has ordered an LNG-powered electric hybrid cruise ship that is ice-classed to sail in arctic waters.
The 270-passenger ship will be built by Fincantieri’s Vard shipbuilding group, and is scheduled for delivery in Q2 2021.
The Ponant icebreaker cruise ship is the first of its kind. In addition to its icebreaking hull and dual-fuel propulsion system, the vessel includes high-capacity batteries and an onboard LNG storage facility.
The PC2 Polar Class hull was designed in collaboration with Aker Arctic to combine forward sailing modes through compact ice and reverse sailing in extreme ice conditions.
Wärtsilä is delivering the dual-fuel diesel engines while GTT will supply the LNG storage technology with optimised capacity of 4,500 m3. ABB is supplying the Azipods – the most powerful on the market.
“The combined expertise of the companies involved in the project has resulted in this pioneering cruise vessel for the polar regions,” said Aker Arctic chief executive Reko-Antti Suojanen.
With its technological capabilities, the ship will be able to reach the geographic North Pole, complete an Arctic Ocean crossing and reach Greenland’s extreme northeast coastline and parts of Antarctica, according to Ponant.
The ship will be classed by Bureau Veritas and will be registered in France.