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News / Alternative Fuels/ New Zealand: Ports of Auckland to get fully-electric ship-handling tug

New Zealand: Ports of Auckland to get fully-electric ship-handling tug

06 Aug 2019
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New Zealand’s Ports of Auckland on Monday (29 July) signed a contract with the Damen Shipyards Group for the delivery of Damen’s RSD Tug 2513 – the first fully-electric ship-handling tug in the world with 70 tonnes bollard pull.

“We have set ourselves the goal of being zero emission by 2040,” says Tony Gibson, CEO of Ports of Auckland. “To meet this goal we needed to find a zero emission option for our tugs.”

“When we first looked into buying an electric tug in 2016, there was nothing on the market,” says Allan D’Souza, Ports of Auckland’s General Manager for Marine, Engineering and General Wharf Operations.

“We are very happy with our existing Damen ASD Tug 2411 and we knew Damen were building hybrid tugs, so Damen was a logical choice for a partner when we wanted to look at the possibility of developing a fully electric model. Damen’s willingness to think differently and invest in the necessary research and development has been critical to the success of this project.”

For this, Damen took data from the operational performance of Ports of Auckland’s existing ASD Tug 2411 and was able to work out what the battery requirements would be for the RSD-E Tug 2513.

The charging system of the newly ordered electric tug will feature four cables on the vessel being connected to the station. Once connected, the 1.5MW charger takes two hours to fully charge the vessel.

The tug has high levels of redundancy in its power systems. The electrical system has built-in redundancy, with the batteries arranged in strings; if one battery in a string fails, the others simply carry on the work.

To ensure absolute safety the tug also has two 1,000kW generator sets. They provide enough power for the tug to operate at 40 tonnes bollard pull in the event of an electrical system failure or if the vessel needs to operate beyond its battery capacity.

Photo credit: Damen Shipyards
Published: 6 August, 2019


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