This revolutionary ferry is among several zero-emission vessels being developed by Artemis Technologies in Belfast, Northern Ireland, designed to provide commercially viable green transport solutions for operators, cities and governments across the world.
With a top speed of 38 knots, the EF-24 Passenger ferry offers a range of 115 nautical miles at a 25 knots cruise speed and produces incredible fuel savings of up to 85% compared to conventional high-speed diesel ferries.
Powered by the patented Artemis eFoiler® electric propulsion system, the 24m vessels will fly above the water, providing a comfortable ride for up to 150 passengers on board, mitigating effects of seasickness and producing minimal wake at high-speed, significantly reducing the impact on shorelines.
Artemis Technologies is a spin-off from the Artemis Racing team that competed in the America’s Cup of which its founder, two-time Olympic champion Dr. Iain Percy OBE is a four-time veteran.
He said, “We have combined our experience from the worlds of high-performance sailing, motorsports, aerospace, and advanced manufacturing to design and develop an electric propulsion system that is quite simply a game changer for the maritime industry.
“Our high-speed passenger ferry provides a cost-effective public transport solution that helps address air pollution, congestion, and noise.
“By encouraging multimodal transport in urban areas, we will enable cities around the world to utilize and benefit from the untapped potential of their waterways.
“With hydrofoils that lift the boats out of the water, we are dramatically reducing drag. This is coupled with a submerged electric drivetrain that is exceptionally efficient, as proven through rigorous testing with our 12m eFoiler® workboat, validating our digital simulations and performance prediction.”
The ferries will be fully accessible, incredibly spacious with a range of facilities on board including bike racks, cabin bag and overhead storage, baby changing facilities, and charging points.
The vessels will also feature a unique high-speed collision avoidance system developed with ECIT, part of Queen’s University Belfast. The system will ensure the safety of operations in port and close to shore by safely diverting the ferry on an altered path away from sea life, wildlife, debris and other in-water objects that might otherwise be obscured from view.
Artemis Technologies has partnered with Condor Ferries to operate a pilot scheme using the first EF-24 Passenger ferry. This will come into service in 2024, running between Belfast and Bangor in Northern Ireland.
Percy added, “The zero-emission ferry that will be seen departing Belfast in 2024, aptly named ‘Zero’, will be the first we build at our manufacturing hub in the city, but it is only the start.
"Many water-based cities around the world are grappling with the challenge of growing populations, congestion, and pollution.
“The EF-24 Passenger can provide an immediate green transport solution that competes economically with road and rail in places like San Francisco, New York, Venice, Istanbul, Dubai, and Singapore – anywhere around the globe that is seeking sustainable transport alternatives that balance the requirement for people to continue to move around with the need to reduce carbon emissions.
“Especially where new infrastructure is required like a new road or rail line, this ferry will not only be the cheapest, but also the fastest and least disruptive way to decarbonise transport networks in water-based cities”.
John Napton, CEO of Condor Ferries, added, “As a leading operator of passenger ferries, we continuously seek to explore technology that will allow us to sail more sustainably, and we know our customers are of the same mindset.
“Green vessels like the EF-24 Passenger ferry perfectly provide that clean alternative to traditional diesel ferries.
“We are thrilled to partner with Artemis Technologies and the Belfast Maritime Consortium to develop these vessels from concept to reality over the coming months and look forward to being the first operator to set sail in 2024 with the world’s most advanced zero-emission foiling fast ferry.”
Earlier this year on its continued mission towards the decarbonization of maritime, Artemis Technologies launched the world’s largest 100% electric foiling vessel, ‘Pioneer of Belfast’ and unveiled an electric workboat range including a 12m multi-purpose workboat and a 12m crew transfer vessel with a 24m crew transfer vessel also currently under development.