January 2023

BC Ferries: Renewables and Electrification

Joint Virtual Event with Vancouver Island Engineering Society (VIES) and the Victoria Branch

Status: Registration is now closed.
Date: Friday, January 6, 2023
Time: 11:30 AM–1:00 PM
Location: Webinar
Presenter: Dr. Babak Manouchehrinia, EIT
Electrical Project Engineer, BC Ferries 
Credit: Eligible for 1 CE Hour(s) of Technical Learning
Engineers and Geoscientists BC Registrant Regular Price: $10.00 + GST = $10.50

Non-Registrant Price: $10.00 + GST = $10.50

Student Price: $10.00 + GST = $10.50
Contact: For more information about this event, please email the Victoria Branch.
Note: Registration deadline is Tuesday, January 3, 2023.
Join the Victoria Branch and Vancouver Island Engineering Society (VIES) for a presentation by Babak Manouchehrinia, EIT, Electrical Project Engineer at BC Ferries, on the potentials of electric battery-operated ships to achieve its zero emission ferry system goal.

Event Schedule

  • 11:30 AM: Zoom Conference Log-in and Networking
  • 11:45 AM: Introduction and Vancouver Island Engineering Society (VIES) Notices
  • 12:00 PM: BC Ferries Presentation
  • 1:00 PM: Adjournment

Event Description

BC Ferries sees a future using battery electric vessels built in Canada, creating a new industry and job potential for Canadians. With plans to become a world-leader in the development and deployment of completely electric powered ferries that are supported by extensive new shore-based systems. This plan would take advantage of BC’s extensive, clean-hydro generated power, and help take BC Ferries a long way forward to meeting its goal of becoming a “zero emission” ferry system.

There are 2 key elements in the plan:

  • Island Class Electrification Program (ICEP): BC Ferries is modifying 6 diesel-electric hybrid ferries to operate exclusively in battery-electric mode without needing their diesel engines. In addition to the vessel changes, 9 terminal facilities will be modified by adding rapid plug-in charging systems.
  • Replacing Five C-Class Ferries: The next stage of BC Ferries’ vessel replacements will be for some of the largest ships in its fleet. Proponents are being sought to assist with the upcoming procurement process to select the shipyards that will be responsible for five (5) new vessels that will replace all five C-Class ferries built between the late-1970s and early-1980s: the Queen of Alberni; Queen of Coquitlam; Queen of Cowichan; Queen of Oak Bay; and, Queen of Surrey. Each sister vessel shares the same length of 138 metres but offering varying capacities of between 1,200 and 1,494 passengers and crew plus about 300 vehicles. Four of the existing vessels serve the major routes between Metro Vancouver and Vancouver Island with the Queen of Surrey operating between Horseshoe Bay and the Sunshine Coast. The replacement vessels will be the largest ferries built for the ferry fleet since the introduction of the three Coastal-class ferries between 2007 and 2008.


Dr. Babak Manouchehrinia, EIT

Babak is a 2018 PhD graduate of the University of Victoria’s Engineering Faculty’s green transportation research group. His research included modelling, simulation, optimization, and analysis of electric and hybrid-electric propulsion systems for various classes of marine vessels. Prior to moving to Victoria and UVic, Babak graduated from the University of Nottingham in 2013 with his Master’s degree in electrical engineering focused on sustainable and renewable energy systems. He has had a variety of experience prior to his masters and during his time in the PhD program, including work in electrical engineering and unmanned aerial vehicles; as an Adjunct Professor/Lecturer in UVic’s Electrical Engineering Department; and as Postdoctoral Research Fellow in green energy systems at UVic.

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