HomeNewsMSC to Expand Luxury Explora Journeys Fleet with Two New Clean-Fuelled Ships

MSC to Expand Luxury Explora Journeys Fleet with Two New Clean-Fuelled Ships

Cruise giant MSC is to expand the fleet of its luxury cruise division – Explora Journeys – with the addition of two newly-built ships, which will also enhance the group’s clean energy credentials.

Explora has signed a memorandum of understanding with Fincantieri – one of the largest shipbuilding groups in the world – for the construction of two new hydrogen-powered luxury cruise ships.

The move will take Explora’s fleet from four to six vessels, with the new ships coming into service in 2027 and 2028.

Hydrogen fuel will power a six-megawatt fuel cell to produce emissions-free power for the hotel operation of the ships and allow the vessels to run on ‘zero emissions’ in port, with the engines turned off.

The two ships will be enlarged by 19 metres to enable the installation of a new generation system based on liquefied natural gas (LNG) and hydrogen.

Explora said this has provided it with the opportunity to enhance its mix of suites, resulting in an increased number of spacious and luxurious Ocean Residences and larger public spaces.

Explora Journeys also said that the previously announced vessels EXPLORA III and IV will now be powered by LNG.

Explora’s use of a containment system for liquid hydrogen is an industry-first environmental technology.

MSC is targeting net zero emissions – across its MSC and Explora fleets – by 2050.

“Explora Journeys is building ships for tomorrow, utilising today’s latest technologies and being ready to adapt to alternative energy solutions as they become available,” said Pierfrancesco Vago, executive chairman of the cruise division of MSC Group.

“The announcement…marks another significant step forward in our goal as a business to reach net zero emissions by 2050 across all our cruise operation for the two brands and a further proof of our commitment to invest in the most advanced marine environmental technologies available to develop sustainable solutions for the future,” he said.

“This transition to zero emissions operations for the maritime industry is the biggest challenge that we will ever face, and this will only be achieved by everyone playing their part – by investing in research and development and through significant investment both by companies but also governments,” Mr Vago said.

Explora Journeys chief executive Michael Ungerer said: “This also demonstrates unequivocally our absolute commitment to operate ships that will appeal and attract the next and future generations of luxury travellers. Sustainability is the new craftmanship and we’re honoured to take a pioneering position within the industry and the wider travel sector”.

Explora Journeys chief executive Michael Ungerer
Geoff Percival
Geoff Percival
I have worked in journalism for more than 25 years. I am joining ITTN from The Irish Examiner, having worked there for the past 16 years as a senior business reporter. I have also contributed to, and written for, the likes of Business & Finance, Business Plus, The Sunday Times, The Irish News, Senior Times, and The Sunday Tribune, amongst others titles.

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