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Fri 4th Nov 2011, 03:23PM   about news.

The manufacturing of the world's first hybrid ferries in Scotland could give UK graduates the chance to not only secure work, but also be at the forefront of a new innovation.

Ferguson Shipbuilders, based in Port Glasgow, Inverclyde, revealed that 100 jobs could be created after it secured the £22 million deal for two diesel-electric and battery-powered ferries.

When they are completed the vessels will be able to host 150 passengers and 23 cars.

They will be powered by battery banks and a small diesel generator feeding power to a switchboard, which then turns the propeller motors.

Although battery power is nothing new in the world of naval submarines, this will be the first time the technology has been introduced on ferries.

The project is earmarked for completion in 2013, when it will become the first ship to be fully built on the river since 2007.

Calmac Ferries, which currently operates Clyde and Hebrides Ferry Services, will operate the boats on short-crossing routes around the Clyde and Hebrides.

Richard Deane, managing director of Ferguson Shipbuilders, said: "The project will have a major impact on the local economy, including the creation of a number of new jobs throughout the course of the build. We look forward to signing the contracts and starting work in due course."



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