Vice President Communication & Sustainability
AIDA Cruises celebrates the keel laying of its new generation of ships
In an impressive, traditionally staged event, AIDA Cruises celebrated the keel laying of the first cruise ship of the new generation on June 30, 2013. The AIDA ships are being built at the shipyard belonging to Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. (MHI) in Nagasaki (Japan). Keiko Omiya, the wife of the Chairman of MHI, placed the symbolic coin in the central block of the ship in the presence of AIDA President Michael Ungerer, MHI Chairman Hideaki Omiya, Hisashi Hara, Head of the Shipbuilding & Ocean Development Headquarters, as well as other prominent representatives of both companies.
“With these ships AIDA will set new industry standards for the future both with regard to their new and innovative product features as well as in terms of protecting the environment. In 1996, AIDA sparked a revolution at sea with the relaxed cruising concept. We are convinced that the German cruise market will continue to grow and that we will provide further momentum for the market with our new generation of ships,” Michael Ungerer, President of AIDA Cruises, commented.
Around three-quarters of the suppliers for the new AIDA vessels in 2015/2016 are based in Germany or the European Union. The company Partner Ship Design based in Hamburg, is responsible for the architecture and interior design in all zones of the new generation of AIDA ships, including the staterooms, and crew cabins. Lufthansa Systems is providing state-of-the-art IT infrastructure including a complete telephone system on board the two new ships. The MaK marine engines are being produced by Caterpillar Motoren in Kiel and Warnemünde, while Siemens is responsible for the overall automation of the cruise ships. The R&M Group, headquartered in Hamburg, has been awarded the contract for the engineering, project planning and construction of the passenger staterooms and crew cabins. Deerberg Systems is setting the highest environmental standards with its innovative recycling and waste treatment systems. “Thanks to the technological partnership between AIDA and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, we are able to open up new markets in Asia for the German supplier industry,” Michael Ungerer added.
AIDA’s new generation of ships also sets standards when it comes to protecting the environment. An AIDA ship currently consumes only 3 liters of fuel per passenger per 100 kilometers. The new AIDA vessels will consume even less. A completely new design for the hull, developed in collaboration with MHI and the Hamburg Shipbuilding Research Institute (HSVA), will enhance energy efficiency considerably. Another innovation in the cruise industry is the use of the Mitsubishi Air Lubrication System (MALS). This modern technology allows the ships to glide on a carpet of air bubbles, which not only reduces friction resistance, but also remarkably cuts fuel consumption. A number of additional measures, such as a new propulsion concept, also help to lower fuel consumption significantly. Moreover, the ships of the new AIDA generation will be fitted with dual fuel engines, meaning that they can also run on liquefied gas, depending on its availability in the port. The use of eco-friendly liquefied natural gas (LNG) substantially reduces CO2 and particle emissions.
In 2011, the Rostock-based cruise company awarded the contract for the construction of two innovative vessels in the next generation of AIDA ships to Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. following a worldwide call for tenders. With a GRT of 124,500 tons, the identically designed new ships, which are 300 meters long and have a beam measuring 37.60 meters, each provide space for around 3,300 passengers and will be delivered in March 2015 and March 2016, respectively.
From March 22 to June 16, 2015, the maiden voyage of the first new AIDA ship will take passengers on a unique 86-day voyage from the Japanese port city of Yokohama to Germany. The AIDA guests will visit 39 ports in 22 countries on three continents.
More information about the new generation of AIDA ships is available at www.aida.de.
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