World’s largest electric ferry enters service in Denmark

(EurActiv, 19 Aug 2019) An all-electric ferry, purported to be the world’s largest, completed its first voyage between two Danish islands last week, as the shipping sector gears up for strict new emission laws due to take effect in 2020.

Late last week, the ferry Ellen steamed, or rather hummed, across the strait between the island ports of Fynshav and Søby in southern Denmark, powered by a 4.3-megawatt hour battery.

The vessel is capable of carrying 200 passengers and 30 cars. Battery builder Leclanche, a Swiss firm, says the ferry will cut 2,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide and 1.4 tonnes of sulphur dioxide every year thanks to its clean propulsion system.

From the beginning of September, the route will be operated between five and seven times a day.

Ellen, propelled by two engines built by Danish firm Danfoss Editron, has a range of 40 km between charges, which the EU-funded project behind the vessel says is seven times more than was previously demonstrated.

In order to make return trips in good time, the boat will be recharged for 20-minute-intervals when docked and then undergo a full charging overnight.

Ellen demonstrates that even longer regional routes can be covered by pure electric means,” said the mayor of the local town of Ærø, Ole Wej Petersen. He added that he hopes the vessel will become a tourist draw in itself.  

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EurActiv, 19 Aug 2019: World’s largest electric ferry enters service in Denmark