North America’s First LNG-Powered Ferry Enters Service

Mike Schuler
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July 15, 2015

Photo: Société des traversiers du Québec


The first ferry in North America to run on liquified natural gas has officially been commissioned in Quebec, Canada.

The ferry F.-A.-Gauthier, is owned by the Société des traversiers du Québec and is the first of three LNG-fueled ships on order.

The vessel replaces the ferry Camille-Marcoux on the Matane–Baie-Comeau–Godbout ferry service operating between the cities Matane and Baie-Comeau, located across from each other on Le Fleuve Saint-Laruent (St. Lawrence River) leading to Quebec City and Montreal.

The two other ferries will be assigned to the Tadoussac–Baie-Sainte-Catherine crossing.

Not only is the ferry the first to run LNG in North America, but it is also the vessel of any kind to operate in Canada.

The F.-A.-Gauthier was built by Fincantieri at its shipyard in Castellammare di Stabia (Naples, Italy) and is equipped with an integrated diesel electric propulsion system with four dual fuel diesel power generators that can run on either LNG or marine diesel oil (MDO).

At 133 meters long by 22 meters wide, F.-A.-Gauthier will be able to reach a maximum service speed of 20 knots and carry 800 passengers and 180 vehicles. The vessel is also designated with an ice-strengthened hull – ice class 1A – and propulsion class 1AS, which will allow for year-round operation.

The Société des traversiers du Québec has partnered with Gaz Métro to supply the LNG fuel for the ship.

“It’s extraordinary that this major first is happening here in Québec, and Gaz Métro is very proud to be a part of it,” highlighted Martin Imbleau, Vice President, Development and Renewable Energies at Gaz Métro. “In support of Québec’s Maritime Strategy, LNG is a concrete solution for fighting climate change and allows local shipowners to comply with the increasingly stringent standards regarding polluting emissions on North America’s waterways.”

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