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FINNISH naval architecture and engineering company Foreship is to continue supporting TT-Line in the construction process of the two new Spirit of Tasmania.

The company developed the concept design for the two ro-pax vessels and will provide continuing services, including naval architecture, hydrodynamics, cargo and passenger service concept development, as well as systems engineering.

The contract to build the two vessels was awarded to Finnish shipbuilder Rauma Marine Constructions, with construction due to commence next year.

Foreship chief operating officer and project lead Olli Somerkallio said, “This is a unique opportunity to work with an iconic Australian ferry brand while reinforcing our relationship with RMC, an important Finnish shipbuilder. We are looking forward to seeing the vessels take shape”.

Due delivery in late 2023 and late 2024, the new Spirit of Tasmania ferries will measure 212 metres in length with a gross tonnage of 48,000 and capacity for 2000 passengers and crew.

The steel monohull vessels will feature more than 2500 lane metres of freight capacity and a separate car deck, as well as 284 cabins.

Like the existing ferries, they will transport passengers between Melbourne and Devonport, a voyage that typically takes between nine and 11 hours.

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TT-Line CEO Bernard Dwyer said the Bass Strait trade route between Victoria and Tasmania is popular with local and foreign tourists alike.

“The new vessels’ increased capacity will allow us to meet growing demand when passenger traffic trends recover from the pandemic,” he said.

“We appreciate Foreship’s expert assistance in conceiving the design and look forward to the next phase of our collaboration.”

The Spirit of Tasmania project is the third time Foreship has worked with RMC. Most recently, the two parties collaborated on the Kvarken Link-commissioned ferry Aurora Botnia, for which Foreship also provided the concept design.

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