Explora Journeys Confirms Order For Two More Ships
Explora Journeys has confirmed that it will be adding two more ships to its fleet, both running on hydrogen power. This will bring the total number of ships up to six for Explora Journeys. The luxury arm of the MSC Group announced plans to build Explora V and Explora VI last year, but have no confirmed orders for the vessels, which will be built at Fincantieri shipyard in Trieste and come into service in 2027 and 2028, respectively.
Explora V and Explora VI will be powered by both LNG and hydrogen fuel. This new generation of liquefied natural gas (LNG) engines will tackle the issues of methane ships, while the ships will also be equipped with industry-first technologies and solutions, including a containment system for liquid hydrogen that will enable them to use this promising low-carbon fuel. The hydrogen fuel will power a six megawatt fuel cell to produce emissions-free power for the hotel operations, while also allowing the vessel to run on ‘zero emissions’ in port, with the engines turned off.
The Executive Chairman of the Cruise Division of MSC Group, Pierfrancesco Bagom said “Explora Journeys is building ships for tomorrow, utilising today’s latest technologies and being ready to adapt to alternative energy solutions as they become available. The announcement marks another significant step forward in our goal as a business to reach net zero emissions by 2050 across all our cruise operations for the two brands and a further proof of our commitment to invest in the most advanced marine environmental technologies available to develop sustainable solutions for the future.”
All six ships in Explora Journeys fleet will be equipped with a comprehensive range of onboard energy efficient equipment to optimise engine use to further reduce fuel emissions. With the addition to these two ships, this will being Explora Journeys investment in its fleet to 3.5 billion euros. This includes an additional 120 million euros each for fitting Explora III and IV with LNG engines, a change that required a temporary half of work due to the significant redesign of the ships.
Explora Journeys first ship, Explora I, was delivered by Fincantieri in July 2023 and is currently operating in Northern Europe. The ship will spend the autumn in North America, and the winter in the Caribbean Sea, before sailing off the US West Coas and Hawaii during the spring of 2024, before returning to Europe in summer 2024 for a series of journeys in the Mediterranean Sea.
With Explora I offering 1 Owner’s Residence, 22 Ocean Residences, 67 OCean Penthouses, 371 Ocean Terrace and Ocean Grand terrace Suites, along with 78 of their suites being multi-generation-friendly connecting suites, there is a category to suit every cruiser.
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