MTU distributor Pacific Power Group (PPG) has continued its long and successful relationship with the San Francisco Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA) by engineering a propulsion system that will be the cleanest operating passenger ferries in the U.S. The system, which includes two MTU 12V4000M64 engines rated at 1,950 hp (1,454 kW) and ZF 7600 reduction gears, will be installed in two new WETA vessels, joining nine other MTU-powered ferries in WETA’s fleet.
In January 2016, third-party emissions testing concluded that the system’s emissions are believed to be lower than any currently-operating passenger ferry in the U.S. The MTU engines are certified to EPA Tier 3 marine emission levels, and with the addition of an exhaust aftertreatment system, EPA Tier 4 Final level performance is achieved. The independent emissions tests were conducted and verified by Infowedge and The University of California at Riverside Center for Environmental Research and Technology.
PPG’s custom-engineered solution avoids the use of diesel particulate filters, and put a high priority on vessel operational reliability and keeping weight and space claim to a minimum. The system will reduce an estimated 10 tons of NOx, PM and CO emissions annually through the use of selective catalytic reduction and diesel oxidation catalyst technologies.
PPG’s engineers worked closely with Vigor Industrial’s Kvichak Marine Industries to develop a system that physically fits the vessel design, meets weight goals and provides easy installation and maintenance for WETA.
“As the demand for cleaner-operating vessels continues to grow, we’re proud to offer innovative, environmentally-friendly solutions that meet and exceed the unique demands our customers have for their vessels,” said Bill Mossey, vice president of Pacific Power Group. “The propulsion and exhaust treatment system created by our marine team and partners makes these ferries some of the greenest operating passenger vessels in the nation.”
The ferries will replace two of WETA’s 12-vessel fleet that are nearing the end of their expected 25-year life. Each vessel will carry approximately 400 passengers and will operate at about 27 knots. Designed by Incat Crowther, each will be a 135' × 38' all-aluminum catamaran. The ferries are currently under construction at Kvichak’s shipyard and are expected to be in service by the summer of 2017.
PPG is a longtime partner of WETA, and has provided propulsion systems, support and ground-breaking environmental solutions for the transit organization for many years. In 2011, Pacific Power Group supplied advanced propulsion systems for WETA’s Gemini and Pisces ferries that exceeded then-current EPA Tier 2 standards by 97 percent.