Australian shipbuilder Austal has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Sweden’s Gotland Company to develop the design of Gotland’s upcoming high-speed catamaran, the “Gotland Horizon X”.
The 130-meter-long catamaran will be able to operate on fossil-free fuels, including hydrogen, and will transport 1,650 passengers and 450 vehicles at speeds of up to 35 knots between the Swedish mainland and the island of Gotland.
Under the agreement, Austal and Gotland will collaborate to design the vessel with a multi-fuel solution that allows it to operate on hydrogen and other fossil-free fuels. Austal’s CEO, Paddy Gregg, said the partnership confirms Austal’s readiness to design a new hydrogen-powered high-speed catamaran, which represents a pathway to achieving net-zero emissions.
Gotland Company’s CEO, Håkan Johansson, said the new high-speed catamaran would be an important step in the company’s climate journey.
“We are working on developing our future ships, and in 2022 we presented the second ship model in our Horizon series: Gotland Horizon X,” said Johansson. “This high-speed catamaran can operate on hydrogen and other fossil free fuels. The vessel will be a very good addition to the traffic between the Swedish mainland and Gotland. She will be used foremost during the summer months and make the trip to and from Gotland in under three hours.”
The head of Gotland Tech Development, Christer Bruzelius, described Austal as a leading company in the development and production of large catamarans and the perfect partner to continue the development of Gotland Horizon X.
For Austal, the MOU with Gotland is another demonstration of the company’s commitment to designing, building, and sustaining future-ready fast ferries.
Gotland Company plans to have at least one of its previously announced passenger and freight vessels, with a capacity for 1,900 passengers and 600 vehicles, in operation before 2030.
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