Maritime, Tech Companies Team Up to Design, Build All-Electric Tug in Asia Pacific

Left to right: Pier Carazzai, Vice President, Pacific Regional Business Development of ABS; Darren Yeo, Executive Vice Chairman of Vallianz; Govinder Singh Chopra, director, SeaTech; Brent Perry, CEO, Shift Clean Energy. Photo courtesy of Vallianz Holdings.

Vallianz Holdings Ltd. and its subsidiaries SeaTech Solutions International Pte Ltd. and Shift Clean Energy, along with maritime classification society the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS), have formed a strategic alliance to combine their respective technical expertise and engineering capabilities for the construction of an all-electric, zero carbon emissions harbor tug.

Vallianz has said that this would be the first of its kind in the Asia Pacific region.

Based on the “E-Volt Electric Tug” design by SeaTech, the e-tug would be driven by a fully-classed electric battery system provided by Canadian-based Shift. This follows a recent Memorandum of Understanding between Vallianz and Shift to collaborate on vessels that require electrification solutions.

The e-tug’s battery design adheres to the ABS “Guide for Use of Lithium Batteries in the Marine and Offshore Industries” and the ABS “Guide for Hybrid Electric Power Systems for Marine and Offshore Applications.”

Designed to an overall length of about 24 meters (78.74 feet), the e-tug would be fully powered by battery and equipped with azimuth propulsion. It would have a bollard pull in excess of 60 tons with service speed of over 12 knots.

A key feature is an onshore charging infrastructure that would allow clients to seamlessly integrate this vessel into their existing port operations. The digitization platform installed on the e-tug—from its battery management system to auxiliary equipment systems—would enable the end-user to remotely monitor and optimize the vessel’s operational efficiency, according to Vallianz.

To mark the collaboration and commencement of the e-tug’s construction, representatives from Vallianz, SeaTech, Shift and ABS attended a signing ceremony at Vallianz’s Singapore headquarters, in conjunction with a livestream of the steel-cutting ceremony at Vallianz’s Batam, Indonesia shipyard.

“Our strategic collaboration with Seatech, ABS and Shift is a major milestone in the development of the Group’s business,” Vallianz Executive Vice Chairman Darren Yeo said. “This e-tug project with our partners will enhance the Group’s technical know-how and engineering expertise to embark on the construction of environmentally-friendly vessels. It is in line with Vallianz’s sustainability efforts and puts us at the forefront of the global marine industry’s trend towards sustainability and decarbonization.”

“As the first of its kind in Asia Pacific, the e-tug will yield environmental and economic benefits to the end- users, industry and community at large, in achieving their zero-emission environmental targets,” he continued. “We expect this e-tug to transform the way port operations are carried out. The operational e-tug will reduce at least 150 tons of nitrogen oxide (NOx) and 2,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions annually versus a conventional tug. This is equivalent to removing 500 typical passenger vehicles from the road.”

According to Yeo, the e-tug would act as a showcase of our shipyard’s capabilities and demonstrate Vallianz’s efforts to transform and innovate its business.

“We believe this will place the (Vallianz) Group in a good position to capitalize on potential demand in a number of markets where there is growing interest in e-tugs such as Asia, Middle East and Australia,” he explained.

“The E-Volt Tug is our customized and cost- effective electric solution for harbor tugs to reduce emissions within the ports around the world,” SeaTech Director Singh Chopra said. “We at SeaTech are delighted to be part of this milestone in line with SeaTech’s vision of a decarbonized Maritime 4.0.”