HSC Stena Voyager

From SpottingWorld, the Hub for the SpottingWorld network...
Stena Voyager leaving Belfast
Stena Voyager departing Belfast
Name: Stena Voyager
Operator: Stena Line
Port of registry: United Kingdom London
Route: BelfastStranraer (GB)
Builder: Finnyards, Finland
Yard number: 405
Laid down: May 1995
Launched: February 1996
Completed: June 1996
In service: June 1996 - 2011
Identification: IMO number: 9080209
Status: In service
General characteristics
Class and type: HSS 1500
Developed by: Stena Rederi AB
Tonnage: 19,638 GT (gross tonnage)
Length: 126.6 m (415 ft 4 in)
Beam: 40.0 m (131 ft 3 in)
Draught: 4.8 m (15 ft 9 in)
Installed power: COGAG Turbines:
GE LM2500
GE LM1600
Propulsion:Kamewa Type S Waterjets
Capacity: 1,500 passengers
375 cars
800 lane metres

Stena Voyager is a high-speed ferry owned by Stena Line and operated on their BelfastStranraer service. The boat is a member of the HSS 1500 class of high-speed ferries developed and introduced by Stena Line from 1996 onwards.

Design and construction

Stena Voyager was constructed by Finnyards in Rauma, Finland.[1][2] Construction commenced in May 1995 and was completed in June 1996,[1] before entering service in July 1996.[3]

The vessel is a catamaran, and was designed with the aim of providing a comfortable and fast service.[4] The sailing time beteween Belfast and Stranraer is 119 minutes.[5]

Power is provided by four GE Aviation gas turbines in a twin COGAG configuration.[6][7] The vessel employs four Kamewa waterjets for propulsion.[1][6]

The HSS class of ferries were designed to allow quick turnarounds at port. A specially designed linkspan provides ropeless mooring and allows quick loading, unloading and servicing. Vehicles are loaded via two of the four stern doors and park in a "U" configuration. When disembarking, vehicles drive straight off via the other two doors.[8]

Onboard facilities

There are numerous catering facilities on board the Stena Voyager, including a bar, coffee shop, and quick service restaurant. The "Stena Plus" business lounge is available at an additional cost. Also available are shopping facilities, a video games arcade, and seating areas. Passenger cabins are not available due to the short journey time.[5]

In 2008 the Stena Voyager received a major refit which included a new Stena Plus area, Quiet Lounge and a New York City Nails nail bar with a new Barista Coffee Shop at the rear at the craft along with other upgrades.[9][10][11]


Stena Voyager has spent the majority of its career sailing on its original route between Belfast and Stranraer, apart from short periods covering for its sister ships.[3]

When the Stena Voyager was introduced on the Belfast-Stranraer route it was advertised as having a crossing time of 85 minutes, however this crossing time was not possible due to speed restrictions introduced on Belfast Lough to prevent the high waves created by the vessel when at speed.[citation needed] Due to the speed restrictions the vessel's crossing time was increased to 105 minutes.[citation needed]

In 2008, the crossing time was increased to 119 minutes, allowing an 8% reduction in fuel consumption.[12] At the end of 2009 the Stena HSS's timetable was cut from four round trips a day to two.[citation needed]

In 2009, Stena Voyager appeared in the BBC television series Top Gear. Jeremy Clarkson, ostensibly having missed the ferry, fired a Renault Twingo at the back of the departing Stena Voyager. The car sank into the wash behind the departing ferry.[13][14]


During 2010, Stena Line were beginning the process of transfer operations from Stranraer Port to a new port facility at Cairnryan, five miles further north up Loch Ryan than the previous port. The new port at Old Light House Point will be called Loch Ryan Port. Planning application materials submitted in 2008 stated that a pair of new conventional Ropax ferries operating at 21–24 knots would take over all operations on the service, replacing the operations of Stena Voyager and the traditional ferry MS Stena Caledonia. The new pair of vessels would provide a passage time of 2:00 hours between Scotland and Belfast and be fitted out with "passenger facilities similar to an HSS".[15] No HSS-compatible linkspan was planned to be provided at the new port.[16]


On 28 January 2009, a lorry (carrying ferrous sulphate powder) burst through the stern doors of the Stena Voyager shortly after departure. Because of this, the ferry had to return to Stranraer. Subsequent sailings were postponed.[17] The cause of the accident was the driver of the lorry failing to park it in gear and to apply the handbrake. The vehicle was insufficiently secured to the ship's deck.[18]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Stena Voyager". DNV Echange. Det Norske Veritas. https://exchange.dnv.com/exchange/main.aspx?extool=vessel&subview=summary&vesselid=18236. Retrieved 26 December 2009. 
  2. Mott, David (11 May 1994). "Stena orders fast ferry". Lloyds List (United Kingdom): p. 18. ISSN 0144-820X. http://www.lloydslist.com/ll/news/stena-orders-fast-ferry/20012489148.htm. Retrieved 26 December 2009. "The order for the 1,500-passenger, 40-knot vessel has gone to Finnyards in Rauma, the yard which won the first two craft, for Stena Sealink last summer.". 
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Stena Voyager" (in Swedish). Fakta Om Fartyg. http://www.faktaomfartyg.se/stena_voyager_1996.htm. Retrieved 26 December 2009. 
  4. "The story behind the building of the first Stena HSS". Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company. http://www.dlharbour.ie/content/stena/hss_story.php. Retrieved 26 December 2009. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 "Our Ships: Stena Voyager". Stena Line. http://www.stenaline.co.uk/ferry/our-ships/stena-voyager/. Retrieved 26 December 2009. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 MacLennan, Graeme (15 December 1993). "Powerful propulsion for Stena catamaran ferry". Lloyds List (United Kingdom): p. 6. ISSN 0144-820X. http://www.lloydslist.com/ll/news/shipyard-week-propulsion-powerful-propulsion-for-stena-catamaran-ferry/20012480596.htm. Retrieved 26 December 2009. "The HSS will be propelled by four KaMeWa equal-sized waterjets (two in each hull, and all with steering and reversing heads). These will be powered by two father-and-son configurations comprised in each case of a Kvaerner-General Electric LM2500 and LM1600 gas turbine, driven through Maag combining and splitting gears.". 
  7. "GE Marine Engines' LM Gas Turbines Exceed 600,000 Hours Operating Aboard 16 Fast Ferries". Press release. 2002-09-09. http://www.geae.com/aboutgeae/presscenter/marine/marine_20020909.html. Retrieved 26 December 2009. "Each semi-swath fast ferry has two LM1600 and two LM2500 gas turbines in a COmbined Gas and Gas (COGAG) turbine configuration." 
  8. King, Mike (28 May 2003). "Ro-Ro: A question of size rather than speed". Lloyds List (United Kingdom): p. 16. ISSN 0144-820X. http://www.lloydslist.com/ll/news/a-question-of-size-rather-than-speed/1034683346020.htm. Retrieved 26 December 2009. "The HSS concept allows simultaneous discharge and loading through all four sterndoors. Car lanes are located as close as possible to the ship and arranged into four lanes to speed turnround. The linkspan mooring arrangement removes the need for ropes, and passengers, stores, fuel and water are all loaded at the same time, typically cutting loading or unloading times to 10-15 minutes.". 
  9. "MJM Group Voyager refit". MJM Group. http://www.mjm-group.com/en_GB/clients/marine/stena-line/hss-voyager. 
  10. "Figura Stena Voyager Plus Lounge refit". Figura. http://www.figura.com/Projekt/Engelska/interiors/Stena_Voyage_Plus_eng.html. 
  11. "Figura Voyager refit". Figura. http://www.figura.com/Projekt/Engelska/interiors/Stena_Voyage_Barista_eng.html. 
  12. Webster, Ben (24 June 2008). "Future of fast ferries in doubt as cost of fuel soars". London: Times Online. http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/transport/article4200087.ece. Retrieved 4 May 2010. 
  13. "Top Gear’s ferry daring stunt". Belfast Telegraph. 2009-10-06. http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/entertainment/film-tv/news/top-gearrsquos-ferry-daring-stunt-14523106.html. Retrieved 2009-10-19. "Top Gear were in Northern Ireland yesterday for their latest madcap stunt — firing a car at the Stena HSS in Belfast" 
  14. "Top Gear team in latest madcap stunt as they fire a family hatchback at a ferry". Daily Telegraph. 2009-10-09. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-1219051/Top-Gear-team-latest-madcap-stunt-family-hatchback-ferry.html. Retrieved 2009-10-19. "the Renault Twingo ... car was fired off the docks in Belfast at a departing Stena high-speed ferry" 
  15. Davison, Alistair; Environmental Resources Management Limited (2008-12-09). 2.5.3 Operation. Loch Ryan Port. Environmental Statement. Edinburgh: Stena Line. p. 18. http://www.lochryanport.co.uk/Non%20Technical%20Summary/Non%20Technical%20Summary.pdf#page=18. Retrieved 2010-02-03. "two modern RoPax vessels which will replace the HSS (Stena Voyager) and the conventional ferry (Stena Caledonia) which currently operate on the route. ... following characteristics. Speed – 21 - 24 knots ... Passenger facilities similar to an HSS ... daytime crossings of around 2 hours" 
  16. Morton, Robin (2009-06-02). "Future of Stena’s HSS ferry service on the line". Belfast Telegraph. http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/business/business-news/future-of-stenarsquos-hss-ferry-service-on-the-line-14322740.html. Retrieved 2010-02-03. "no provision has been made for HSS docking facilities at a proposed new £70m ferry terminal due to open in 2011 at Loch Ryan Port" 
  17. "Lorry found hanging out of ferry". BBC News Online. 2009-01-29. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/7857274.stm. Retrieved 26 December 2009. "... returned to Stranraer in Scotland after a lorry was discovered hanging out the back of the Stena Voyager. The vessel was not long at sea when a loud bang was heard by passengers." 
  18. "Report on the investigation of the shift of an articulated road tanker on board the roll-on roll-off high-speed sea service cargo ferry Stena Voyager in Loch Ryan on 28 January 2009". Marine Accidents Investigation Branch. http://www.maib.gov.uk/cms_resources.cfm?file=/Stena_Voyager_Report.pdf. Retrieved 26 December 2009.