AsiaEnvironmentPorts and Logistics

K Line pushes for battery-powered tugboats

Japan’s Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (K Line) announced that its harbour logistics business unit, Seagate Corporation, will build a new battery-powered tugboat.

The vessel will be equipped with a propulsion system running on the so-called hybrid EV system. It will sport an electric motor as a main power source, run by a lithium-ion battery charged by a land charger, and also be equipped with a generator as an auxiliary power source.

The Tokyo-based shipping major said the tugboat will be the first which has an electric motor as the main power source in Tokuyama and will be deployed in the first half of 2025.

New Zealand’s Ports of Auckland recently welcomed the world’s first full-sized ship-handling electric tug. Named Sparky, the vessel is the first Damen RSD-E Tug 2513. It has a 70-tonne bollard pull and features 80 battery racks holding 2,240 batteries, totalling 2,784 KWh of power, and two 1000KW backup generator sets.

Earlier this year, Singapore’s Vallianz cut steel on what is claimed to be the very first all-electric harbour tug in the Asia Pacific. Based on the E-Volt Electric Tug design by SeaTech, the vessel will be driven by a fully-classed electric battery system provided by Shift and built at the Vallianz shipyard in Batam, Indonesia.

In the US, Crowley Maritime Corporation has also moved to build its own e-tug that is expected to enter service by mid-2023.

Adis Ajdin

Adis is an experienced news reporter with a background in finance, media and education. He has written across the spectrum of offshore energy and ocean industries for many years and is a member of International Federation of Journalists. Previously he had written for Navingo media group titles including Offshore Energy, Subsea World News and Marine Energy.
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