Tallink`s new LNG driven 49,000 GT fast ferry Megastar, built by Meyer Turku Oy set sail on her maiden voyage at 13:30 on 29th of January local time. Test moorings in both harbours and bunkering in Helsinki has been carried out successfully.
Mr. Janek Stalmeister, the CEO of AS Tallink Grupp said that Megastar will open another era of Tallink Shuttle after the first successful one, 10 years ago, when the Star was launched. The ship has been designed by our passengers, crew members, the Baltic Sea with its fragile environmental matters and sailing conditions and our own experience as operators. We are excited to introduce her to the wider public and are also glad to apply several equal upgrades also to her companion on the route – Star“, added Stalmeister.
The steel cutting for Megastar started on 4th of August 2015, the keel was laid on February 9th 2016, christening and the float-out took place in July and sea-trials in December 2016 and January 2017.
Megastar’s godmother is the President of Finland, Tarja Halonen.
With a service speed of 27 knots, the ship combines a comfortable fast ferry service, social eating experience of open-layout dining areas, and versatile choice of lounges and well thought through shopping solutions. Passenger comfort has been upgraded with two-level loading, enabling passenger vehicles and large cargo units to enter and exit from different levels. The upgrade continues with the easy and wide access to passenger areas with different venues, including a quiet sitting lounge.
Megastar is 212 metres long and accommodates up to 2,800 passengers and has the same length and capacity as one of the largest cruise ferries of the company, the Baltic Queen. Megastar will use LNG as fuel, but will also be able to run on diesel.
With LNG, she will create no Sulphur or soot particles and a decrease in Nitrogen and CO2 emissions. Designed for the Tallinn-Helsinki route exclusively, Megastar complies with current and future emission regulations for the ECAs (Emission Control Area),
Cost and finance
The cost of the ship is around €230 million and the purchase is financed with a loan of €184 million from Finnish Export Credit Ltd., credit is guaranteed by Finnish Export Credit Agency “Finnvera” and arranged by Nordea Bank Finland Plc. Megastar is also co-financed by European Union, the Connecting Europe Facility, Transport – Motorways of the sea (Marco Polo).
The goal of the project was to construct a new environmentally friendly LNG vessel and the EU aid is exclusively for environment friendly and energy efficient solutions on-board the vessel Megastar. Total amount of the Twin-Port 2 project together with partners Port of Helsinki and Port of Tallinn is €97.6 million and the aid is €29.3 million. The total amount of the Tallink Grupp project is €16 million Euros and the amount of aid is €4.8 million.