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Environment
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Glorious homecoming

Viking Glory is poised to start making the rounds in the Baltic Sea

article picture: Glorious homecoming

Viking Line’s new vessel, Viking Glory, was christened in the Port of Turku on 28th February 2022. The company’s new flagship sailed for the first time to Mariehamn and Stockholm the following day.

VIKING GLORY – TIMELINE

3/2016 - A letter of intent is signed with the Chinese shipyard XSI

8/2018 - Construction on the vessel begins in Xiamen

5/2019 - In a public vote, “Viking Glory” is chosen as the name of the new vessel

6/2019 - The keel-laying ceremony at the shipyard

1/2021 - Viking Glory is launched

6/2021 - The vessel passes its first sea tria

l 11/2021 - The vessel passes its second sea trial

12/2021 - Viking Glory starts its journey home to Turku

3/2022 - The vessel launches service on the Turku–Mariehamn–Stockholm route

Or, actually, Viking Glory already has quite a bit of sailing under her belt. Prior to christening ceremony, Viking Glory completed a five-week journey from China to Finland, reaching Turku on February 6th. The ship had started its journey from Xiamen, China, in December 2021. The journey took Captain Ulf Lindroos and his crew of 40 via e.g. the Suez Canal and the Strait of Gibraltar before ending up in the Baltic Sea, which will be the operative environment for the new vessel.

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Viking Glory was built by the shipyard Xiamen Shipbuilding Industry Co, Ltd. Commissioned in April 2017, the ship came with a price tag of approximately EUR 225 million.

The new flagship replaces Amorella, which is now moving to Helsinki, and will increase Viking Line’s passenger capacity on the Turku–Mariehamn–Stockholm route by about ten per cent. The vessel handles about 60 per cent more cargo than its predecessor.

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Home sweet Turku

Viking Line’s president and CEO Jan Hanses comments that the Turku route is very important for Viking Line as well as for passenger and cargo service between Finland and Sweden.

“We are extremely proud that we once again can take a vessel that represents the very latest in new advances to Turku – one that both improves the level of service on the route and reduces the environmental impact. There is great interest in Glory, and sales have gotten off to a really good start,” says Hanses.

Hanses is very satisfied that the company succeeded in bringing home Viking Glory although, as he says, there was also “doubt in the air”.

“This fantastic vessel exceeds all my expectations. It represents a brand-new generation of vessels and highlights the company’s origins in the archipelago in a fine way,” says Hanses.

Viking Glory’s innovative solutions make it one of the world’s most climatesmart passenger ships. As Viking Glory gets going, the environmental impact of Viking Line’s vessels on the Turku–Mariehamn– Stockholm route will be further reduced.

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For example, Viking Glory has 66 per cent more cargo capacity than Amorella but is expected to produce more than 25 per cent fewer emissions than its predecessor. Viking Glory and Viking Grace, which began serving the route in 2013, are now the two most climate-smart vessels sailing the Baltic Sea.

Environmental edge

Viking Line’s sustainability manager Dani Lindberg points out that efficiency, environmental requirements as well as the future were all taken into consideration in an entirely new way when Viking Glory was being planned.

“Most of our sustainability work involves different solutions that passengers don’t notice, like the vessel’s technical solutions, which have seen rapid advances. Ten years ago, Grace was the world’s most environmentally-friendly passenger ship and now Glory, which is bigger, will use about ten per cent less fuel,” Lindberg says.

Viking Glory is one of the first vessels in the world to use Wärtsilä’s 31DF dualfuel engines and run on liquefied natural gas (LNG). They enable optimization of fuel use but produce no sulphur emissions at all. Furthermore, they produce fewer carbon dioxide emissions than do diesel engines.

Project Manager Kari Granberg, who is in charge of the new construction at Viking Line, says that the vessel’s six 31DF engines feature the lowest fuel consumption, but at the same time, have the highest cylinder output in their segment (550 kW/cylinder).

Recovering waste cold

Viking Glory will also, as the first in the world, recover the waste cold from the use of LNG and recycle it for use in cold counters, cold rooms, and other special rooms.

“Today, recovery of waste heat is already common, but to recycle waste cold for the purposes of refrigeration appliances and cold rooms is an innovative and highly climate-smart solution,” Granberg says, adding that Viking Line has carried out development work in collaboration with Wärtsilä, Projektia and Deltamarin.

Captain Ulf Lindroos says that when Viking Grace started running on LNG, sulphur and particulate matter emissions were reduced by 85 per cent while greenhouse gas emissions were reduced by 15 per cent compared to oil.

“Like Grace, Glory will also run on biogas or synthetic fuels produced using renewable energy when these are available in the future,” says Lindroos.

Making moves

As Viking Glory kicks off operations, this marks also the first time when a passenger ship of this kind utilises the Azipod propulsion unit manufactured by ABB as a means of saving time and energy in terms of ship manoeuvring: the system facilitates faster turns in the ports and a hull design with approximately 8% less water resistance than with a traditional propeller system.

Dani Lindberg confirms that Glory’s Azipod propellers and other technical innovations save considerable time in port, giving the ship leeway in terms of keeping to the timetable.

“Every minute saved in port results in fewer emissions during the sea journey. We also do daily route planning, which means we modify our journey based on weather conditions and timetables,” adds Lindberg.

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Championing responsible sailing

Gustaf Eklund, who is Head of Development at Viking Line and in charge of developing the concept for the new ship, comments that Viking Line endeavours to be a forerunner of responsible navigation – and this goal is reflected in the design and construction of the ships.

Additionally, Viking Glory is equipped with a Climeon energy recycling system that harnesses and converts waste heat from the engines into electricity. The system can generate up to 40% of the electricity required for the passenger functions.

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Moreover, there is a dynamic air conditioning and lighting system onboard, which has a direct effect on energy consumption. This system is controlled by the booking system: if a cabin remains empty at departure, it will be set in a power-saving mode, thereby minimising air-conditioning and heating for that particular cabin.

On board Viking Line’s vessels, great focus has traditionally been placed on recycling – and that is also the case for Viking Glory. Dani Lindberg says that the ship recycles glass packaging, scrap metal, paper and cardboard.

“Recycling the metal in cans uses 75 per cent less energy compared to producing new iron ore. On board Glory, food waste is also collected and used in biogas production,” he says.

by: Sami J. Anteroinen

photos: Viking line, photographer: Tuukka Ervasti

VIKING GLORY – FAST FACTS

Length: 222,55 m
Width: 35 m
Cruising Speed: 22,1 knots
GT: 65,211
Route: Turku-Mariehamn/Långnäs-Stockholm
Class: DNV
Flag state: Finland
Passanger capacity 2,800
Crew: 200
Cabins: 922
Laner meters: Freight 1500 m, 464 passenger cars on deck 3 and 4, and 120 passenger cars on deck 5

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