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The hybrid wellboat Ro Vision has been named Norway's Ship of the Year 2020. Photo: Rostein.
The hybrid wellboat Ro Vision has been named Norway's Ship of the Year 2020. Photo: Rostein.

The world’s first hybrid-power wellboat, Rostein’s Ro Vision, has been named Norway’s Ship of the Year 2020.

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Norway’s fisheries and seafood minister, Odd Emil Ingebrigtsen, announced the prestigious award in Bergen today.

“The wellboat fleet continues advancing, and this year’s winner shows that there is a focus on lower emissions and increased safety,” said Ingebrigtsen, who praised the founder of the shipping company Rostein, Odd Einar Sandøy, as one of the industry’s pioneers.

Battery pack

The Ro Vision was ordered by Rostein AS, designed by Skipskompetanse AS (Ship Competence) and built by Larsnes Mek. Verksted AS (Larsnes Mechanical Workshop). Rostein is a subsidiary of Sandøy’s company Rofisk AS, which also has a 69% share in Larsnes Mek.

Instead of having four 1300 kW diesel generators that would normally be on board a vessel of its type, the Ro Vision has only three, with the fourth replaced by a 600 kW battery pack.

The vessel is in service withScottish Sea Farms’ co-owner SalMar.

Adventurous development

“We have operated with wellboats for 32 years, and in those years have built 25 new-builds. It has been an adventurous development for us. Topping this by first being nominated, and then winning, is absolutely fantastic,” said Sandøy.

Candidates for the award are nominated by readers of the ship magazine and website Skipsrevyen (Ship Review), which belongs to the same company as salmon farming publications Fish Farming Expert, Kyst.no and Salmonexpert.cl.

The jury which decides the winner is made up of industry professionals led by Skipsrevyen editor-in-chief Gustav-Erik Blaalid.

Setting the standard

This year’s Ship of the Year is equipped with the latest technology for wellboats, said Blaalid.

Ro Vison will be the standard for the company’s new-builds. Later, it may be relevant to refit existing vessels in accordance with this standard. Thus, the total environmental benefit will be great, said Blaalid.

At the same time, the award is a great recognition for the wellboat industry, which has produced Norwegian ship technology and design to become a world leader, he added.

‘High time a wellboat won’

“For us at the yard, this is incredibly nice. It shows that our employees build world-class boats,” said Larsnes Mek chief executive Jarle Gunnarstein. “We have had a very good collaboration with Rostein for more than 11 years. But if it was great to be nominated, then it is even more fun to win.”

Per Jørgen Silden, general manager of Skipskompetanse AS, said: “It is a great recognition for us that a vessel we have designed wins this award. I personally think it was high time that a wellboat was nominated. Ro Vision shows what great development there has been in the wellboat industry.”

Skipsrevyen’s partners for Ship of the Year are NME (Norwegian Maritime Exporters, NTNU (Norwegian University of Science and Technology), the Norwegian Shipowners’ Association, Norwegian Industry, Maritime Bergen, Norwegian Shipyards and the Maritime Forum.

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