Bluewild, Ulstein Design & Solutions AS and Westcon have been awarded Ship of the Year 2023 in Norway for the innovative factory trawler ECOFIVE, under construction at Westcon for fishing company Bluewild.
The new vessel has an overall length of 73.20 metres, and is packed with new thinking and innovation, in some instances applying technology carried over from that used in fish carriers and land-based processing. The design aims to handle catches in an ultra-gentle fashion, taking the contents of the codend on board beneath the waterline and holding fish in live reception tanks.
Processing on board will use the latest technology, with options to process into a variety of products, while CO2 as a refrigerant provides greater efficiency and all residual raw material from processing is used.
ECOFIVE is designed for multi-rig trawling with four main winches, as well as having capacity to work with pelagic gear.
It also features hybrid propulsion and has a 1130kW/hour battery pack as well as other efficiency measures, including electric winches and comprehensive heat recovery systems, which are cumulatively expected to provide a 25% fuel saving compared to conventional operation. The twin propulsion system with steerable nozzles is the most significant single area for energy efficiency. This alone reduces energy consumption by 15% compared to conventional vessels of the same type. In addition, comes electrical winches, comprehensive heat recovery, and further energy efficiency measures.
According to the jury, the design utilises ground-breaking technology with innovations for a greener fishing fleet – and this is the first time that the Ship of the Year award has gone to a fishing vessel.
The Ship of the Year award is presented by maritime magazine Skipsrevyen, and on the jury are Gustav Erik Blaalid, chair of the board of Skipsrevyen, Sverre Steen, Head of Department at NTNU in Trondheim, and Hans Jørgen Rambech, senior advisor at Sintef Ocean in Trondheim.