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Diesel powered hovercraft launch
release time:2015-05-18       Viewed:
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Hovertravel in partnership with Griffon Hoverworks has launched its new generation MAN diesel powered passenger hovercraft to serve the popular Isle of Wight passenger route.

Neil Chapman, Managing Director at Hovertravel, said: "With our two existing hovercraft having served us extremely well and the company achieving the amazing milestone of 50 years of continuous operation, the company wanted to plan for the future and ordered two new craft to benefit from the obvious advances in technology since our existing fleet was built. Our research indicated that two, more efficient, craft would be the best replacement option and would allow us to continue to serve our customers in the most effective way."

The new vessels will replace the two existing craft that have seen 30 years service. The new generation craft will be powered by MAN engines and are designed to achieve maximum productivity, low maintenance and exceptional fuel economy.

The only scheduled passenger hovercraft service in Europe and beloved of season travellers and tourists alike – started life when Sir Christopher Cockerell made the hovercraft principle feasible in 1959. His first experiment involved an empty cat food tin, a coffee tin, an industrial air blower and a pair of kitchen scales.

The new generation craft will take full advantage of the technological advances made by MAN to ensure this iconic product remains leading edge and continues its innovative heritage into the next 50 years of service. The craft will be extensively sea trialled this summer ready for launch in 2016.

The new air cushion vehicle is powered by D2862LE124 engines, each with a power output of 1100hp, meeting the latest tier III emission standards.

MAN use Bosch EDC7 multi stage fuel injection and ultra high injection pressure combined with MAN’s engineering knowhow to achieve this without the need for exhaust gas after treatment or expensive catalytic convertors.

PME Group will be partnering Hovertravel and MAN to supply technical and engineering support from the very first sea trial to ensure the transition to MAN powered engines is as smooth as possible. PME Group will also provide maintenance, spares and technical advice over the coming year.

PME Group, based in Poole Dorset is a MAN dealership. It is an engineering firm that has extensive experience in the Commercial Workboat range from Commissioning to servicing and spare parts.

Peter Chalk, Managing Director of PME Group said: “PME Group will be working closely with both Hovertravel and MAN to ensure that these prestigious craft not only have a smooth transition to the new generation but also that this important service is kept to its optimum by supplying expert technical advice coupled with a maintenance and service routine that ensures this unique craft retains its superb reputation for service, reliability and cost”.

The new craft is powered by a pair of MAN D2862LE124 engines

By Jake Frith

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