CASE STUDY Commercial Marine

mtu Ironmen engines power the M/V Woods Hole, Cape Cod’s cleanest-running ferry

Posted on June 23, 2017

The Steamship Authority has been a Martha’s Vineyard lifeline since 1960. The storied summer colony is located approximately seven miles off the southern coast of Cape Cod, and is known for its prestige, pristine beaches and laid-back spirit. Year-round residents, seasonal vacationers and day-trippers rely on the Steamship Authority’s ferries for all transportation, including freight commerce.


The Steamship Authority


mtu 16V 4000 M64


Reliability, lower emissions and fuel efficiency


Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, USA

The engines are performing flawlessly. They’re doing exactly what they’re supposed to do.

David Taglieri - marine sales manager, Stewart & Stevenson
Because Martha’s Vineyard is a highly sought-after vacation destination during the summer months, the Steamship Authority’s summer routes are full of summering passengers. Other times, the ferry’s main concern is transporting freight. To meet this unique, fluctuating need, the Steamship Authority commissioned the M/V Woods Hole, a hybrid passenger/freight ferry, to help its fleet adapt to Martha’s Vineyard’s seasonal transportation needs. Built by Conrad Shipyard of Morgan City, Louisiana, the 235-foot ferry is powered by two 16V 4000 M64 Ironmen commercial marine engines.
“I have a personal affection and love for the Steamship Authority. I grew up in the area—the Steamship Authority was in the background of my childhood. It brings me great satisfaction to see mtu in the fleet,” said Jeff Sherman, senior marine sales manager, mtu America. With doors on either end, the Woods Hole is a roll-on/roll-off ferry with the added capability of carrying large trucks and 10 eighteen-wheel tractor-trailers, as well as the safe transport of hazardous materials like gasoline and propane. For non-freight trips, the ferry carries up to 384 passengers and 55 automobiles. Though more utilitarian than a typical passenger ferry, it is outfitted with impressive passenger comforts, including a snack bar area, conference tables, charging and Wi-Fi stations, and state-of-the-art radar, communications and navigation systems. The hybrid ferry makes 14 trips a day, operating on a 45-minute route between Martha’s Vineyard and the community of Woods Hole.
“With the addition of these top-of-the-line mtu engines, the M/V Woods Hole was the first EPA Tier 3 certified emissions level vessel to operate in Nantucket and Vineyard Sound. We believe it’s the cleanest ferry running in Cape Cod today,” said Carl Walker, director of engineering and maintenance for the M/V Woods Hole, Martha‘s Vineyard and Nantucket Steamship Authority.
The Steamship Authority has become a loyal mtu customer. Its seasonal high-speed passenger ferry, the M/V Iyanough, which transports passengers to Nantucket, dock-to-dock, in only one hour, is powered by four 12V 4000 M70 diesel engines. Also, the M/V Governor, another SSA ferry, was repowered with 12V 4000 M53 engines approximately two years ago. The decision to power the M/V Woods Hole with mtu engines was driven by confidence in the product’s reliability. The vessel’s engines were installed by Stewart and Stevenson of Harvey, Louisiana. Standout service and support is provided by David Taglieri who oversees the service of M/V Woods Hole on a day-to-day basis.
“The engines are performing flawlessly. They’re doing exactly what they’re supposed to do,” said Taglieri, marine sales manager for Stewart & Stevenson. “The Steamship Authority runs a very demanding, around the clock operation and mtu marine power provides them the uptime they require.”