Passenger vessels, cruise ships, and ferries have very high requirement for on-board comfort regarding noise and vibration. In addition, the reliability and availability is very critical for the safety of the passengers and the vessel.
Consequentially, electric propulsion was early evaluated to be beneficial and taken into use. The list of cruise vessels with electric propulsion is today long and increasing.
As the podded propulsion is shown to give significant improvements in maneuverability and fuel costs, with an increase in propulsion efficiency of up to 10% (Kurimo ), a large and increasing portion of new-buildings are specified with electrical podded propulsion.
As the environmental concern is increasing, the requirements of reduced emission, spill, and damages on coral reefs by anchoring of the cruise vessels are increasing. Hence, the vessel must maintain its position solely by thrusters controlled by a DP system.
This will increase the need for electrical propulsion and podded propulsion in the cruise market even more.
The same restrictions and tax penalties for gas emissions (COx, Nox and Sox) have resulted in that several recent new buildings of ferryboats for fjord and strait crossing have been equipped with electric propulsion. With frequent crossing schedules and quay docking, the improved maneuverability by podded propulsion has significantly reduced the fuel consumption.
The propulsion power varies with the size of the vessel, from some few MW for smaller ferries up to 30-40 MW for large cruise liners.
The hotel load can be a significant part of the total power installation, for a large cruise liner typically in order of 10-15 MW.