Aero-derivative Marine Gas Turbines

Aero-derivative gas turbines have entered the commercial marine propulsion market in the 1990s. Before the 1990s, most marine gas turbine applications were naval vessels, but there are some notorious exceptions. The most famous is GTS Finnjet, commissioned in 1977, built by Wärtsilä's Helsinki shipyard as hull number 407. Two Pratt & Whitney FT4C-1D aero-derivative gas turbines give her displacement hull with Swedish/Finnish Ice Class 1A Super a speed of 33.5 knots. After 25 years in the business, she still going strong and is very popular with her passengers.

What makes a gas turbine suitable or even ideal for marine propulsion applications?

  • High output;
  • Compact dimensions;
  • Low weight;
  • High torque;
  • Low noise and vibrations;
  • Low emission;
  • Low lube oil consumption;
  • Low maintenance;
  • Rapid on-site engine module change-out;
  • Rapid engine exchange.

The advantages and disadvantages of using gas turbines in marine applications are described on the other pages in this section of the website.