Towards zero emission for fast passenger ferry

Color Line is a leading shipping company within European short sea shipping and has today a fleet of 7 ships. The company wish to be a frontrunner by introducing new and climate-friendly technology onboard their ships and in their ports of call.

The company’s overall environmental strategy shapes the companies long term investments with a vision to reach zero emission to air and water. As an example, Color Line utilize shore power for all their ships when at harbour in their Norwegian ports in Oslo, Larvik, Sandefjord and Kristiansand.

In August 2019, Color Line put into service the world biggest plug-in hybrid ship, Color Hybrid, in operation between Sandefjord and Strømstad.

M/S SuperSpeed 1 is in traffic between Kristiansand and Hirtshals. The vessel was built in 2008 and upgraded and modernized in 2011. In total the ship can carry 2400 persons and 750 cars with a transit time of 3 hours and 15 minutes.

Goal of pilot project

Color Lines vision is to offer their customers a zero emission transit between Norway and Denmark.

The goal of the pilot study is to conduct a techno-economic screening of relevant fuel technologies and then carry out a more in-depth analysis of the most promising and relevant technologies.


The pilot started in November 2021. The vessels technical specifications, the energy requirements under different operational conditions, and the different limitations the pilot work need to consider, have been defined. Furthermore, a list of potential fuel technologies and solutions has been identified, which the various partners continue to work on. The plan is to carry out the initial screening within end of May 2022.

Status March 2022: The screening process will soon be completed, and it is planned to move ahead with 2 technologies and to study these in more detail. The pilot closure date is December 2022.

Status September 2022: The screening process is carried out. Detail studies for two potential alternative battery-hybrid and green methanol-hybrid options are ongoing.

The fuel price and the maturity/safety of the selected technology will be critical factors for the selected fast passenger ferry to follow IMO’s expected reduced emission trajectories over the project period (2027-2043).

The pilot’s biggest uncertainty factor is related to the development of the future energy price. This is difficult to predict in today’s unstable political and economic climate.

Final conclusion including concept recommendation will be communicated before the pilot is finalized at the end of March 2023.

In addition to the GSP partners identified here, Fosen Design & Solutions is included as an associated member of the pilot.


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