Flagship Innovation: Wärtsilä 31 Engine

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Technology group Wärtsilä will supply the engines for a new Canadian Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker. The ship is being designed and built at Seaspan Vancouver Shipyards and will be the flagship of the Canadian Coast Guard’s icebreaking fleet. Because of the long operational range required for the vessel’s employment in arctic waters, fuel efficiency was a prime design consideration in the selection of the Wärtsilä 31 engine. The Wärtsilä 31 engine has been recognised by Guinness World Records as the world’s most efficient 4-stroke diesel engine and was therefore considered an obvious choice. The order was booked by Wärtsilä in Q3 2023.

Key features: Wärtsilä 31 Engine

The 158-meter multi-mission Polar Icebreaker will feature a power configuration comprising four 16-cylinder and two 8-cylinder Wärtsilä 31 engines, collectively generating 47 MW. To ensure environmental compliance, the engines will integrate Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) systems meeting IMO Tier III standards. 8-cylinder Wärtsilä will also supply the centre shaft line with a stainless-steel ice-class propeller, as well as Wärtsilä’s NACOS Platinum navigation system.

Client Testimony and Collaboration

“Wärtsilä has a fine track record and years of experience in delivering high-class marine technologies including recently delivering the propulsion equipment for the Offshore Fisheries Science Vessels (OFSV), plus the diesel generator sets for the Offshore Oceanographic Science Vessel (OOSV) built at Seaspan for the Canadian Coast Guard,” commented Leo Martin, Senior Vice President – Programs, Seaspan Shipyards.

“The fuel efficiency of the Wärtsilä 31 engine was a determining factor in the award of this prestigious contract. However, equally important was our project delivery experience and service support across Canada. Furthermore, our previous cooperation with both the Canadian Coast Guard and Seaspan has been very successful, and we are honoured to be again working with them,” said Simon Riddle, General Manager, Naval Sales – Wärtsilä.

Project Timeline

The delivery of Wärtsilä’s is scheduled to be delivered to the yard in 2025.The new Icebreaker will assume the mantle as the Canadian Coast Guard’s flagship vessel, succeeding the venerable ‘CCGS Louis S. St-Laurent’, set to retire after six decades of service.Seaspan Shipyards is known as a world class builder of high technology ice class vessels.

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Source: Wartsila