ABB sails into $110 million contract

ABB has today signed contracts worth $110 million to supply Azipod propulsion, electrical power, distribution, and automation systems to nine marine vessels currently under construction.

The vessels are being built for Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Russian joint venture investors CJSV Sevmorneftegaz, and the French maritime operator Groupe Bourbon.

ABB said the contracts to supply systems for three new cruise ships, two icebreakers and four oil and gas platform vessels signal encouraging capital spending activity in the global ship-building industry.

‘We have continued to invest in technological innovations for this important market segment in anticipation of advanced projects like these,’ commented Dinesh Paliwal, head of ABB’s Automation Technologies division.

The patented ABB Azipod system is a modular, podded propulsion unit fitted outside the vessel and is capable of steering over a 360-degree range. According to ABB, it offers ‘superior manoeuvrability and significant reductions in fuel consumption, noise, vibration and interior space once needed for conventional drive train and rudder components.’

The nine vessels will be completed during 2005 and 2006.