Our editors carefully select every product we recommend. We may earn a commission from these links. Learn more

This Fully Electric Cruise Ship is Equipped with Massive Solar Sails

Hurtigruten Zero Emission Norwegian Coastal Express 0 Hero
Photos: Hurtigruten

Since large vehicles and ships produce some of the most carbon in the travel and supply chain industries (and in general), it’s important that they receive eco-friendly updates and soon. Cargo trucks and cruise ships, in particular, are long overdue for an electric overhaul as they make up a sizeable chunk of greenhouse gas emissions. We have seen a lot more electric trucks recently, like the Tesla Semi that started being delivered in 2022, but cruise ships are still catching up. That’s not to say there aren’t solid efforts being made, because companies like the Norweigan cruise line Hurtigruten have been innovating with hybrid cruise ships. Hurtigruten was actually the first to make one in 2019 when they released the MS Roald Amundsen, marking an important step in the right direction, made even more significant by the cruise line’s (and coastal route’s) 130-year history. And now Hurtigruten has announced a fully electric cruise ship that’s set to release in 2030, promising zero carbon emissions as part of the company’s Sea Zero initiative.

Hurtigruten Zero Emission Norwegian Coastal Express 1
Photo: Hurtigruten

The first ship that Hurtigruten is working on will feature three autonomous sails capable of pulling in air to aid navigation and will be outfitted with 1,500 square meters of solar panels. This natural energy will be accompanied by a rechargeable 60MWh battery system, which thankfully will be made without cobalt. The ship will also feature onboard AI technology working with a slew of cameras and sensors to aid navigation and slim down the bridge. Additionally, the ship will have smart cabins with temperature controls available via smartphone.

Hurtigruten Zero Emission Norwegian Coastal Express 2
Photo: Hurtigruten

Hurtigruten’s Sea Zero project will be in its research phase until 2025, and has them working with one of Europe’s largest independent scientific research outfits, SINTEF, alongside other experts in the industry, to make its entire fleet of cruise ships completely electric.

Hurtigruten Zero Emission Norwegian Coastal Express 3
Photo: Hurtigruten

Hurtigruten’s first fully electric and zero-emission cruise ship is coming in 2030, with more information and concept art available on Hurtigruten’s website.