After over two years of design and construction, Aker BioMarine launched a unique krill harvesting vessel in a ceremony at Alesund, Norway in January. The Honorable Alexandra Shackleton, granddaughter of renowned British Polar explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton and godmother of Antarctic Endurance, was invited to officially name the vessel.
In April 2017, Norwegian Aker BioMarine commissioned a new environmentally-friendly krill harvesting vessel for NOK 1.1 billion (USD 140 mill). With a total of 40 Norwegian vendors contributing to the vessel, the two-year build and final fit-out have kept in excess of 900 people busy working to have the vessel ready for the 2019 harvesting season.
New Krill-harvesting Vessel Launched in Norway
Matts Johansen, CEO of Aker BioMarine said, “We have put all our experience and know-how into building a vessel capable of matching our ambitions and operational needs, a vessel we could have only dreamt of when we started our very own Antarctic adventure for more than a decade ago. Named in tribute to polar explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton’s Norwegian-constructed vessel, Endurance, the name also reflects our own perseverance over the years. Energy efficient and equipped with a host of environmentally friendly technologies, Antarctic Endurance is specifically designed and constructed for our unique business, with direct input from our experienced crew. It is truly one of a kind and our very first purpose-built krill harvesting vessel.”
“This is the largest single contract VARD has ever received for a harvesting vessel, and we are very happy to have entered a shipbuilding contract with them. This will also contribute to securing Norwegian jobs in the future,” said Webjørn Eikrem, EVP Production and Supply Chain at Aker BioMarine in February 2017.
Sustainable krill harvesting
According to Aker, Energy efficiency has been a key goal for the designers, and the finished newbuilt 130-meter long state-of-the-art vessel is said to be 30% more energy efficient than other comparable trawlers.
“Aker has, since Aker BioMarine was established in 2006, focused on sustainable krill harvesting. From day one, we have worked with WWF Norway. The krill fishery in Antarctica is one of the most sustainable fisheries in the world, and Aker BioMarine hopes to yet again set a new bar for sustainable harvesting with this new vessel. Norwegian skills and new technology will help us reduce our carbon footprint even further with this vessel,” said Matts Johansen, CEO at Aker BioMarine, in 2017.
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Challenging Antarctic conditions
Designed specifically to meet the unique demands of krill harvesting operations in the challenging Antarctic conditions, the new vessel will feature an integrated cargo handling system. Powered by the latest technology including combustion engines, the vessel will be propelled with an efficient propulsion line with a variable propeller. The supply vessel will be equipped with an advanced heat recovery system helping to reduce the carbon footprint even further.
“We have put all our experience and know-how into building a vessel capable of matching our ambitions and operational needs, a vessel we could have only dreamt of when we started our very own Antarctic adventure for more than a decade ago,” says Matts Johansen, CEO of Aker BioMarine.
About Aker BioMarine
Aker BioMarine is a biotech- and fishing company dedicated to securing human and planetary health. The company develops krill-based ingredients for use in nutraceuticals, aquaculture and animal feed. The company supplies bio-marine ingredients through a 100% traceable supply chain that it also owns and controls. Aker BioMarine was the first krill company to be awarded Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification.
New Krill-harvesting Vessel Launched in Norway, written by Tor Kjolberg