Great Lakes Towing has added new green-propulsion tugs to its fleet providing towage through ice in North America’s lakes
It christened two of its new ice-breaking tugboats at its own shipyard in Cleveland, Ohio on 16 December, signalling its newbuilding campaign had passed the halfway mark.
Pennsylvania is the fourth of a series of 10 tugboats Great Lakes is building to replace its ageing fleet. Wisconsin, fifth in this series, was also christened during a virtual ceremony hosted from the shipyard.
Up to 10 of these 19-m tugs are being built as part of a fleet modernisation campaign and for future sales. They are based on a Damen Stan tug 1907 Ice design with more than 30 tonnes of bollard pull, and are powered by two MTU 8V4000 Tier III diesel engines driving three-bladed Kaplan style propellers in Kort nozzles.
They each have two John Deere/Marathon generator sets and a hybrid power system supplied by Logan Clutch Corp and installed by Canal Marine & Industrial.
Great Lakes Towing president Joseph Starck told Riviera Maritime Media during a webinar earlier in September 2020, that all 10 tugs will have hybrid propulsion systems using electric motors to reduce emissions during operations.
Canal Marine designed the Logan FlexaDrive Hybrid power system, allowing the tugs to operate on electric power while idle and underway at low speeds.
The FlexaDrive sets also enable these tugs to operate on electric power when under low loads, without using the main engines, reducing emissions and the cost of engine maintenance, said Mr Starck during Riviera’s Hybrid and electric tug viability: the future’s bright webinar, on 3 September.
FlexaGen has a Logan variable-speed motor/generator power take in (PTI) device linked to Twin Disc transmission of double-clutch design. FlexaDrive has two Logan variable-speed motor/generator PTI units on Twin Disc transmission.
Mr Starck said the tugs’ compact size and high manoeuvrability make them ideal for the narrow waterways and low bridges that characterise harbour towing on the Great Lakes.
Five more of these ice-breaking tugs are on order at Great Lakes’ shipyard for delivery over the next three years. The sixth tug, yet to be named, is scheduled for completion in Q3 2021. Additional, follow-on tugs of the same design are available for purchase by third-party buyers.
Tug Pennsylvania was christened by vessel sponsor Louise Kandzer, girlfriend of senior vice president of operations Gregg Thauvette. Tug Wisconsin was christened by vessel sponsor Sally Stevens, wife of Great Lakes Towing’s vice president for business development Robert Zadkovich.
Hybrid propulsion and emissions reduction technologies will be discussed during Riviera’s series of virtual conferences and webinar weeks during Q1 2021 - use this link to view more details and to register for these events