May 15, 2023 | Ship design & naval architecture news

Towage provider Svitzer, part of A.P. Moller-Maersk, has awarded a contract to Uzmar Shipyard to build two new TRAnsverse tugs for its Australian business. 

The TRAnsverse tugs arecreated in collaboration with Robert Allan Ltd, which aim to set a new standard in tug efficiency, power and manoeuvrability, and deliver an estimated 10-15% reduction in fuel use compared to other tugs on the market. The new tugs will be built to a specification that also enables biofuel operations bringing tank-to-wake carbon emissions to zero. 

The TRAnsverse tug’s omnidirectional hull form, in combination with its towing staple and propulsion system, provides towage capabilities that claimed to be unmatched by other designs. The design enables it to maximise the forces necessary for braking and steerage during towage, as it manoeuvres steadily in the water, and consequently without compromising safety, even at full speed range. It maintains position with lower propeller input power than tug designs where the thrusters are mounted side by side, and overall brings a significant increase in stability and freedom of movement. As a result of these features, the TRAnsverse tug meets a range of complex harbour and terminal towage environments, providing benefits such as the ability to reduce overall time of tug jobs, greater availability in poor weather conditions, reduced emissions and enhanced safety. 

The two new tugs will be deployed to Svitzer Australia’s Port of Newcastle (NSW) operations in 2025 becoming the first TRAnsverse tugs to be deployed to Australia, and only the second and third to be deployed globally. The Port of Newcastle is a busy, diverse port operation with a complex harbour, tidal restrictions and channel environment requiring active escort towage, and direct and indirect towage capabilities. Newcastle sees a range of vessels calling from capesize vessels carrying coal, to bulk, container and cruise ships. The complexity of Newcastle’s towage operations and range of vessels that call on the port is expected to showcase the full range of the TRAnsverse tug’s capabilities.

Svitzer CEO Kasper Friis Nilaus said: “We have been listening closely to our customers and their need for innovative towage solutions. The TRAnsverse tug offers significant improvements in operational efficiency, flexibility and sustainability by improving shipping turnaround times and reducing carbon emissions, helping customers to manage the demands of the modern towage market and the complex, busy port environments of today and the future. The scale of Svitzer’s operations, collaboration with customers and deep understanding of port operations globally enables us to design and invest in the best possible towage solutions. We are committed to building new tugs that meet the highest of efficiency standards and that support our customers and port operations in reducing their scope 3 emissions and total carbon footprint, whilst not compromising – and indeed improving – on safety and operational performance.” 

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