First LNG tugboat in the port of Singapore

The port of Singapore has set itself the goal of reducing its emissions. As part of this, an LNG tugboat has now been put into operation there.

The vessel in question is the “JMS Sunshine”. The hybrid drive system was supplied by Rolls-Royce Power System.

Seatrium Limited, a provider of engineering solutions to the offshore and marine industry, is the designer, builder and operator of the new 29m long, 65-ton bollard pull tug. Rolls-Royce has supplied two 16-cylinder mtu Series 4000M55RN gas engines and the gas regulating unit (GRU) for the harbour tug.

According to the manufacturer, these engines are already well below the limit values of current emission guidelines (such as IMO III) without exhaust gas aftertreatment. The particulate mass is below the detection limit and they emit only small quantities of nitrogen oxides, it is said.

The hybrid system is particularly suitable for the load profile of the harbour tug, Rolls-Royce continues: It enables very precise manoeuvring and a strong bollard pull when full power is used. In order to achieve maximum thrust, the total power of the two azimuth thrusters is 4,000 kilowatts. This is achieved by adding 1,492 kilowatts each supplied by the mtu gas engines and 500 kilowatts of electric motor power on each shaft. The tug is equipped with a battery capacity of 904 kilowatt hours. The battery power is used to absorb peak loads, for example, during acceleration, to manoeuvre purely electrically in port and to supply the ship on board with electricity.

11 LNG ships already in operation

According to Rolls-Royce’s Power Systems division, it has now received orders for mtu gas engines as propulsion systems and onboard gensets for a total of 11 ships worldwide. These include ferries, tugs and government vessels. On the North Sea in the Wadden Sea nature reserve, two catamarans belonging to the Doeksen shipping company have been operating reliably with mtu gas engines since 2021. On Lake Constance in southern Germany, the “Richmond” ferry has been operating a shuttle service since 2023.

“We are proud that we were able to contribute to this innovative Seatrium project with our gas engines. The workboat market is one of our strategic business areas. The mtu engines were selected because they meet the demanding requirements of harbour tug operations – in terms of reliability, ease of operation, dynamic engine behaviour and low emissions,” commented Chew Xiang Yu, Head of Rolls-Royce Power Systems’ civil marine business in Asia, on the commissioning of the new tug.

The LNG tug is equipped with a Rolls-Royce hybrid propulsion system

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Copyright: © Rolls-Royce Power Systems

Caption: The LNG tug is equipped with a Rolls-Royce hybrid drive system