MSC Cruises excelled in the race towards zero emissions, ordering two ships powered (also) by hydrogen from Fincantieri. Explora Journeys, the luxury cruise brand of the group headed by the Aponte family, and Fincantieri have announced the signing of a memorandum of agreement for the construction of the two units.
The number of ships of the new brand under construction at the Trieste group led by Pierroberto Folgiero thus rises from four to six (Explora I was launched in Monfalcone on 30 May last). All units from the third onwards will be fueled by liquefied natural gas but Explora V and VI, in addition to being characterized by a new generation of LNG engines, will have a liquid hydrogen collection system that will allow the use of this low-emission fuel. carbon.
Energy with hydrogen
Hydrogen, a statement explains, will power a 6-megawatt fuel cell to produce emission-free energy that will be used to operate the hotel areas and allow ships to operate at “zero emissions” in port, with the engines off.
The two new constructions will enter service, respectively, in 2027 and 2028. MSC also announced that the previously announced ships, Explora III and IV, initially designed with traditional engines, will instead be powered by LNG. The two units will be enlarged by 19 meters to allow installation of the LNG system.
Investments of 3.5 billion
Explora V and VI will bring Explora Journeys’ total investment to build its fleet to 3.5 billion euros. This figure includes the upgrade of the III and IV with LNG engines, for a further 120 million each; a modification that required a temporary interruption of the works, due to the significant redesign of the ships, whose delivery is currently scheduled for 2026 and 2027.