Turkish ferries built with Sigmatex carbon materials

A four-year supply agreement between Sigmatex (UK) Ltd. (Runcorn, UK)  and Özata Shipyard (Yalova, Turkey) has drawn to a successful completion after fabrication of 15 carbon fiber ferries.

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A four-year supply agreement between Sigmatex (UK) Ltd.. (Runcorn, UK)  and Özata Shipyard (Yalova, Turkey) has drawn to a successful completion. The Turkish city of Izmir’s Metropolitan Municipality contracted with Özata Shipyard to build a series of 15 composite passenger ferries to ease traffic congestion in the city located on Turkey’s Aegean coast.

Özdemir Ataseven, the founder and owner of the shipyard, says that his company made a €20 million ($23.5 million USD) investment in composites fabrication technology in order to build the ferries. Built of dry carbon  material via vacuum infusion technology, the ships offer fuel and maintenance advantages, despite the higher material cost of carbon composites compared to steel and aluminum. The Özata Shipyard says that, based on the ship´s operating success, each ferry will pay for itself within 4 years. Because of greater durability and a weight 1/3 that of steel, the environmentally-friendly ferries can reach 30 knots with lower engine power using less fuel. Maintenance works are also significantly reduced.

The supply agreement between the shipyard and Sigmatex, originally signed in 2013, led to delivery of 300 tonnes of carbon non-crimp fabrics (NCF) and unidirectional (UD) carbon textiles over the term of the four-year project. The successful delivery of materials saw each of the 15-strong fleet completed in eight months, and delivered in 90-day intervals.

The so-called “Ships of the Future” are now recognized as one of the first and most important projects of its kind in the world. The ferries were constructed for use as sea transport vehicles and the final ferry in the fleet is anticipated to be commissioned by the final quarter in 2017.

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