Voith Schneider propellers make the new Norderaue” ferry efficient and environmentally friendly

Adam Foster
Adam Foster

12 June 2018


For the third time, Voith Schneider propellers (VSPs) will be fitted to a double-ended ferry operated by Wyker Dampfschiffs-Reederei (W.D.R). The propulsion and steering concept will allow the new ferry “Norderaue” to navigate the Wadden Sea on its regular route in a reliable, efficient and eco-friendly manner.

Following the official christening ceremony of the “Norderaue” on 6 June 2018, W.D.R has launched its third double-ended ferry. The new build will be a welcome addition to the fleet of the long-established shipping company on the highly frequented Föhr-Amrum route. Like the two sister vessels “Uthlande” and “Schleswig-Holstein”, four VSPs will drive the ferry. With an input power of 470 kilowatts in each propeller, the “Norderaue” can travel at a maximum speed of 12 knots, a speed that is rarely needed for scheduled services. These power reserves enable the operator to optimize fuel consumption and minimize emissions. They also allow to compensate delays and unfavorable weather conditions.

With a length of 75 meters and a maximum width of 16.40 meters the “Norderaue” is a large ship and needs the appropriate propulsive power. After all, it is designed to transport cars on more than 350 lane meters and trucks on 280 lane meters, as well as up to 1,200 passengers, to and from ferry ports.

Due to the shallow waterway however ships using the Wadden Sea require a low draft. The new W.D.R vessel has a draft of just 1,908 meters. To achieve this low value, despite the size of the vessel, the blades of the VSPs used are slightly shorter than the standard version. In order to deliver a high amount of power into the water, a total of four VSPs are installed. Two of the proven drive systems, type 16R5 EC/100-1, are integrated on each end of the vessel built at the Neptun shipyard in Rostock.

These systems increase the vessel´s reliability, which is already particularly high due to the ruggedness of the VSPs. As a result, the vessel can be maneuvered with ease even in the shallow waters of the ferry ports Dagebüll, Wyk or Wittdün. This design concept enables the “Norderaue” to operate efficiently in the shallows of the Wadden Sea.

Due to the symmetrical design of the vessel time consuming turning manouvres are unnecessary which also reduces fuel consumption. Like its two sister ships, the vessel also has the “Blue Angel” certification for environmentally friendly ship design and operation.