Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid to be godmother of Tallink Grupp’s new LNG-powered shuttle vessel MyStar

Construction of the MyStar | Picture Sammeli Korhonen, RMC
Construction of the MyStar | Picture Sammeli Korhonen, RMC

MyStar, the most environmentally friendly ship on the Baltic Sea, is currently under construction at the Finnish shipyard Rauma Marine Constructions (RMC) on behalf of Tallink Grupp and will be completed in 2022. Following shipbuilding traditions, the ship’s naming ceremony will take place at the Rauma shipyard on 12 August 2021 and the President of the Republic of Estonia Kersti Kaljulaid will be the godmother of the new ship.

As part of the festivities, MyStar will also be launched after the christening. Historically, the launching – putting the ship in the water – marked another important milestone in shipbuilding: the land-based ship was now completed and ready to be tested for seaworthiness.

The launching of MyStar takes place in the dry dock of the shipyard where the ship was previously built. During the ceremony, the valves will be ceremoniously opened by the guests of honour and the dry dock will be filled with water. After the christening and launching of the ship, the shipbuilding work that previously took place on the outside of the ship will now be moved to the inside of the ship.

In shipbuilding tradition, the role of a ship’s godmother is submitted to a prominent and influential female member of society. As the godmother of Tallink’s latest ship, the LNG-powered ferry Megastar, is Finnish President Tarja Halonen, it was a pleasing and logical choice to have the Estonian president as godmother for the new ship MyStar, which will sail in tandem with the shuttle Megastar on the Tallinn – Helsinki route.

Tallink Grupp CEO Paavo Nõgene emphasised that President Kersti Kaljulaid’s activities and contribution to raising awareness of environmental and climate change issues, both in Estonia and on the international agenda, were instrumental in her selection as godmother.

The President of the Republic of Estonia and MyStar’s godmother, Kersti Kaljulaid, commented:

“When the Estonian ship Admiral Bellingshausen set off on its Antarctica200 expedition voyage two years ago, it helped us tell several stories – showcasing Estonia as both a seafaring nation and a high-tech country, and raising public awareness of global environmental issues. Although MyStar and Admiral Bellingshausen are very different at first glance, the story these two ships tell us is similar. Estonia is a seafaring country and every year there are more ships flying the Estonian flag, proudly displaying our national colours. The addition of MyStar to the Estonian fleet is very special – both in terms of size and technology on board, and in terms of the goal of further reducing emissions. Likewise, Tallink plays a special role in the Estonian economy, as an employer as well as a feeder to work for tens of thousands of people.”

Paavo Nõgene, CEO of Tallink Grupp, commented:

“For us, MyStar symbolises new hope for a better future, as greener and more energy-efficient ships mean a cleaner Baltic Sea and a better living environment for all of us. The tandem of our ships Megastar and MyStar, which will operate on the Tallinn-Helsinki route in 2022, will create a green bridge between Estonia and Finland. We are particularly pleased that despite the past difficult pandemic year, we were able to push ahead with our key strategic investment projects as planned and MyStar will be completed in 2022 despite all the challenges.”

MyStar is another important step for Tallink Grupp towards even more energy efficiency and environmental friendliness on the Baltic Sea. Similar to the current flagship Megastar, MyStar will be powered mainly by LNG, is equipped with the latest cutting-edge technology and innovation on board and will meet all current and known future emission regulations.

Jyrki Heinimaa, President and CEO of Rauma Marine Constructions, commented:

“MyStar is the most energy-efficient ship among several vessels built here at the RMC shipyard in Rauma for Tallink Grupp. Our goal is to be at the forefront of environmentally friendly shipbuilding, and we are proud to be shaping the shipping industry between Tallinn and Helsinki in a greener direction in cooperation with our significant and long-standing customer.”

To find the name for the new shuttle ship, Tallink Grupp organised an international naming competition. The name MyStar was proposed by Marietta Kähära from Finland, explaining that MyStar is every traveller’s own star on the Baltic Sea.

The next major milestone in the construction process of Tallink’s new shuttle vessel MyStar is the completion of the ship and delivery to Tallink Grupp by Rauma Shipyard, which is scheduled for the first half of 2022.

Additional background information

Construction of MyStar began last year on 6 April 2020 at the Rauma Shipyard (RMC) in Finland. MyStar is the largest ship built at the RMC shipyard to date.

The first major milestone in MyStar’s construction process – keel laying – took place last year in September 2020, when the first keel block was laid in dry dock at Rauma Shipyard.

In autumn 2020, LNG tanks and main and electric engines were delivered and installed. In April 2021, all hull blocks were installed and the underwater part of the hull was completed. The vessel thus reached its full length of 212 metres. Construction of the remaining hull above water is currently underway in the dry dock of the RMC shipyard.

The ship will be christened in dry dock on 12 August 2021 and, according to Tallink’s tradition, the launching will take place in dry dock immediately after the christening.

After the launch, construction work will continue on the interior of the ship. The interior design of the ship is by the renowned Finnish architectural firm dSign Vertti Kivi & Co.

Traditionally, the ship receives her name at the christening. Based on ancient shipbuilding customs, it is believed that the blessing and stacking of the ship have great significance in ensuring the longevity and good fortune of the new vessel. In ancient times, sacrifices were made during the blessing of ships to secure the favour of the gods. The distant memory of this custom lives on to this day, symbolised in the contemporary custom of smashing a bottle of champagne against the stern of the ship during the christening. Tallink’s ships are traditionally christened with Nicolas Feuillatte Brut Réserve champagne.

Facts about MyStar

  • Built in Rauma Marine Constructions (RMC), Finland, year of construction 2022
  • 2800 passengers
  • Passenger cabins: 46
  • Decks: 12
  • Lane gauge: 3190 lm on 4 car decks
  • Length: 212 m
  • Width: 30.6 m
  • Gross tonnage: 50,000
  • Maximum speed: 27 knots
  • Ice class: 1A
  • Main engine power: 42,000 kW
  • Reference vessel: Tallink shuttle ship Megastar
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