The Fifth Annual International Student Design Competition for a Safe, Affordable Ferry

A project of the Worldwide Ferry Safety Association


About the Student  Design Competition   This year the students were asked to design a passenger ferry that could traverse the Singapore Strait and access terminals in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore and carry 300 passengers plus crew. The students were expected to take into consideration local weather patterns and traffic conditions in the Malacca and Singapore Strait.

The specifications that the students had to meet were exacting and required research, calculation, creativity, and hard work to meet.  More than half of the registrants to the competition did not submit designs.  For those teams that persisted and came up with credible solutions, the judges want to acknowledge their efforts as well. This year’s competition has been supported by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA). 

The following section offers background on the 1st and 2nd prize winners, who were represented at the March 22 reception, as well as two 3rd prize winners who did not attend.   

First Prize: Singapore Collaborative The team is the result of a collaboration of three academic institutions in Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore Management University and Newcastle University in Singapore.  The Captain of the team is Marcus Teo Tze Kang (Nanyang Technological University).  His teammates include Jaylen Li (Singapore Management University) and Ong Yong Kit (Nanyang Technological University) as well as faculty advisors, Dr. Ivan Tam and Dr. Arun Dev, both from Newcastle University in Singapore.

The students who presented at the conference were Marcus Teo Tze Kang from Nanyang Technological University representing the Singapore University collective first prize team and Jangka Rulianto and Rahmat Diko Edfi of the Institut Teknologi Sepuluh Nopember Surabaya second prize team. A TK Foundation grant enabled the travel of Marcus Teo Tze Kang and Jangka Rulianto.  

About the Vessel: SolarJet   The first place vessel Innovations include:

•    Fabrication with an aluminum-steel alloy to minimize material assembly cost yet provide a strong and lightweight skeletal core

•    The tri-mono hull, (mono hull below the waterline, but a trimaran shape at the waterline) provides excellent stability and because of the hull’s configuration and the generally benign environmental conditions of the waterway, the vessel is ballast free which simplify

•    Diesel is the fuel source supplemented by solar power generated by a huge malleable screen at the top of the vessel.  The giant screen doubles as an augmented reality screen showing manmade visuals when not needed for solar.

•    Navigation is assisted by a waterjet propulsion system, azipods, as well as bow and stern thrusters. The Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) screens in the wheelhouse assist navigation by visuals indicating incoming ships and weather patterns. This is made possible by modern sensors communicating with one another in a webbed network also known as the internet of things.

•    The team thought through design for operations in the event of a serious accident.

Second Prize: Team from Indonesia The team from Institut Teknologi Sepuluh Nopember Surabaya is led by Raja Andhika Rizki Ramadhani.  Teammates include Rahmat Diko Edfi, Novario Pratama Adiguna, Muchamat Alvinur, Jangka Rulianto, Riyan Bagus Prihandanu, and Alif Yudha Ashari. Their faculty advisors are Hasanudin, Agoes Santoso, and Muhammad Zaman.  The latter two advisors attended the reception as did the Transport Attaché of the Indonesian consulate in NYC, Mr. Saptandri Widiyanto.

About the Vessel:  Archimaiden, a name referring to ship-architect. The vessel is an Aluminum Catamaran, fueled by green energy as a Diesel-LNG hybrid.  The design team notes that Singapore has LNG fueling stations.  The judges appreciated the simple straightforward design as a positive for construction and operation.   Innovative features were set up to address debris in the harbor.  The vessel has a debris monitoring system as well as a system to keep debris from clogging intakes.  The graphic representation of the safety plan was very good

Third prize from India The team from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur is led by Biswamohan Mishra.  Teammates are Ajith Bhargav and Chaitanya Srinidhi.   The Faculty advisor is Dr. Vishwanath Nagarajan. About the vessel: BC Grandeur  

The vessel is an Aluminum catamaran. With a center bow/hull to reduce pitch movement, the passengers have a more comfortable ride in the cabin. Sensors that measure the draft are innovative and are related to the alarm system to prevent overloading.  

Third prize from the Netherlands The team from the Delft University of Technology the Netherlands is led by Annemieke de Smeth.  Teammates are Antine Reddingius, Daniëlle Roos, and Gert Galis.  The faculty advisor is Hans Hopman.

About the vessel: Safe Ferry in the Singapore Strait The vessel is an aluminum catamaran.  The judges appreciated its good layout, good plate thickness, and good damage stability. The vessel report was distinguished by an evaluation of accidents in the area; the issues identified such as collisions, and debris in water were addressed by the design.  The vessel is equipped with a navigational system able to detect objects up to 200 m in front of it.  The vessel is protected against underwater debris with a skirt-like structure made of high-density polyethylene.  The estimated cost of the vessel was $7.5-8.5 million.   Honorable Mention is made to two teams from India, one from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur led by Saurav Agarwal and the other from the Indian Maritime University Visakhapatnam, led by Pradip Desai. The teams from Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology Dhaka led by Atik Amin and the University of Cebu, Philippines, led by John Ranoco receive Significant Recognition as well for their success in designing a vessel according to the specifications.

Background.  For the past four years, awards have been made to student teams of $10,000 annually, with the top prize each year being $5000. An impressive roster of internationally recognized maritime professionals have served as judges.  Awardees have been recognized at international maritime conferences and through widespread media reports.   The competition for 2013 was to design a passenger ferry for the Bangladesh river system; for 2014, to design an inter-island RoPax for Papua New Guinea; for 2015-16, to design an inter-island RoPax for the Savu Sea of Indonesia.  For 2017 the competition was to design a passenger ferry for the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok Thailand.   For 2017-2018 the competition is for the design of a passenger ferry for the Singapore Strait that could travel between Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore.

.A NEW DESIGN COMPETITION WILL BE ANNOUNCED SHORTLY.  to make sure your school is on the mailing list  kindly contact Dr. Roberta Weisbrod, Executive Director of the Worldwide Ferry Safety Association, at