ABB completes electric propulsion delivery for advanced icebreaking fleet

ABB completes electric propulsion delivery for advanced icebreaking fleet
Azipod icebreaking propulsion for the Yamal LNG fleet

ABB has completed delivery of electric propulsion systems to the final vessel in a 15-ship series, which will enter service for the Yamal liquefied natural gas (LNG) project.

Yakov Gakkel, owned by joint venture between Teekay LNG Partners and China LNG Partners, joins a fleet of 15 specially designed tankers transporting LNG year-round from one of Russia’s most significant export developments in a generation – Yamal LNG.

Built in less than six years and to ARC7 ice class, fifteen 170,000m3 capacity vessels have opened the Northern Sea Route to commercial gas shipping and significantly expanded the navigation period in the direction of the Asia-Pacific region.

ABB’s Azipod propulsion system, where the electric drive motor is in a submerged pod outside the ship hull, can rotate 360 degrees to increase maneuverability, which is particularly crucial for vessels operating in ice. Azipods have proven ability to cut fuel consumption by up to 20 per cent compared to traditional shaftline propulsion systems.

“The sheer scale of this project and the size of the Azipod units involved make this a milestone for ABB,” said Juha Koskela, managing director, ABB Marine & Ports. “The fuel and emissions-saving capabilities of Azipod electric propulsion have made it the technology of choice for sensitive arctic conditions for almost 30 years, and we were delighted to leverage our experience to deliver safe and reliable technologies ahead of schedule in line with the project’s demands.”

The scope of ABB solutions supplied as part of the projects also include turbochargers, generators, switchboards, transformers, electric drives and propulsion control systems.