Boundary Layer Technologies (California USA-based marine technology startup company) unveiled a new fully electric hydrofoil ferry concept design.
The company’s propulsion system and proprietary hydrofoil technology ELECTRA features max operational range 100 nautical miles and max speed of 40 knots, twice the range and the speed of existing electric ferries.
In comparison with fossil fuel alternatives, the battery-electric propulsion of ELECTRA reduces cabin noise by up to 20dB compared to conventional ferry ships. Boundary Layer Tech noted the vessel’s foiling system also offered excellent seakeeping and ride comfort.
The company has already developed the hydrofoil & control systems required for ELECTRA. Boundary Layer Tech plans to have the first ships in operation by the first quarter of 2024 in regions like the United States, the Mediterranean, and Scandinavia.
According to the company's CEO Ed Kearney, hydrofoil technology was the key to enabling the electrification of passenger ferries.
“By reducing the drag of the vessel by a factor of two, the powering requirements are also halved, which increases the speed and range of what an electric ferry can do. This opens the door to electrification of the majority of ferry routes across the world.”
According to Boundary Layer Technologies, the ELECTRA ferry provides OPEX reductions of up to 35% in comparison with fossil fuel burning fast ferry alternatives and also helps operators de-risk the future cost uncertainties of emissions trading schemes and carbon taxes implemented globally.