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First hybrid powered ship crosses Northwest Passage

MS Roald Amundsen

Hurtigruten’s MS Roald Amundsen has become the first battery-powered ship to complete the epic crossing.

On the evening of the 10 September, MS Roald Amundsen arrived in Nome, Alaska. This marked a historic moment in the cruise industry and for Hurtigruten as the expedition cruise line’s ship became the first to complete the more than 3,000 nautical miles passage from the Atlantic to the Pacific, by hybrid propulsion.

MS Roald Amundsen, Hurtigruten

“Every expedition cruise with Hurtigruten is unique, yet this green milestone is literally making history with our guests, ” says Hurtigruten CEO, Daniel Skjeldam.

“Only a few years ago, building cruise ships with battery packs was considered impossible; now the MS Roald Amundsen pays tribute to the great explorer she is named after by traversing one of the world’s most fabled stretches of sea by hybrid propulsion.”

Norwegian polar pioneer Roald Amundsen made the first complete passage from 1903 to 1906, and so the hybrid-powered ship follows in his legendary footsteps years later.

“We have experienced gale winds, snow and ice. We have also witnessed spectacular sunsets, and striking scenery and wildlife,” commented captain Albrigtsen.

“However, what has had the biggest impact on us, is how warmly we’ve been welcomed by the local communities along the route, just as Roald Amundsen himself was.”

He concluded: “Their unparalleled hospitality is what has made this a genuinely inspirational voyage.”

Ms Roald Amundsen, Hurtigruten

Launched this summer, MS Roald Amundsen has made waves in the cruise industry with her ground-breaking technology. The ship uses batteries to support her engines, resulting in emissions being reduced by more than 20 per cent.

Having traversed the Northwest Passage, MS Roald Amundsen will sail further along the coast of North- and South America, before spending the winter in Antarctica.

Continuing to make history, Ms Roald Amundsen will also be the first ship to be christened in Antarctica this autumn.

MS Roald Amundsen will then return to North America in the summer of 2020, for a series of expedition cruises in Alaska.

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