The steel cutting of the vessel with yard number S.696 at Meyer Werft in Papenburg marks the start of construction for the first LNG cruise liner for AIDA Cruises.
Felix Eichhorn, President of AIDA Cruises, pressed the start button of the computer-controlled cutting machine, thereby commencing work on the first steel plate for the next generation of AIDA cruise ships. The first ship in this new class will be delivered at the end of 2018. With this new project, AIDA is continuing its long-standing partnership with Meyer Werft. From 2007 to 2013, the Papenburg shipyard produced seven Diva class cruise liners that operate successfully today in the market for AIDA cruises.
"AIDA will be giving the German holiday market a completely new impetus with the new Helios Class," says AIDA President Felix Eichhorn. For the first time, these new ships will be powered by LNG engines made by Caterpillar/MaK which fulfill the strictest environmental regulations. Energy efficiency was the key focus of the entire engineering work. The planning and design activities gave absolute priority to heat recovery, innovative electric motors, LED lighting, ship automation geared to energy efficiency, optimized underwater paintwork to reduce resistance, weight-optimized material selection and many other topics.
"We are very pleased that we can break completely new technological ground with AIDA in this way. AIDA and Carnival now lead the way for establishing LNG as the fuel of the future," says Tim Meyer, CEO at Meyer Werft.
The new ships for AIDA Cruises are also equipped with features tailor-made for the destination and for a first-class cruise experience. The ships will be setting new standards, not only in terms of their gross tonnage of 183,900 and space for 2,500 cabins but also in terms of design and environmental compatibility.