SAFEEN Group trials first electric tug in Middle East

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SAFEEN Group, part of AD Ports Group, has announced it is trialling an electric tug within its Marine Services fleet, the first of its kind in the Middle East, which will be deployed at AD Ports Group’s flagship facility, Khalifa Port.

Unveiled during the 27th International Tug & Salvage Convention, Exhibition & Awards 2024, Dubai, the Damen RSD-E Tug 2513 is an all-electric harbour tug, expected to provide numerous advantages including zero emissions from ‘Tank to Propeller’, operational efficiency thanks to boasting a 70-ton bollard pull able to handle the largest vessels, and cost-effectiveness due to lower maintenance costs compared to diesel-powered counterparts.

Initially, the tug will be operated via generators which comply with the latest emission IMO tier 3 regulations. This set up, despite using generators, remains more fuel-efficient compared to traditional ASD tugs.

The trial initiative is expected to pave the way for a formalised electrification strategy for the marine services fleet. Future plans include a shore facility at Khalifa Port capable of delivering 1.5 MW of power for charging, to accommodate such tugs, demonstrating AD Ports Group’s dedication to sustainable infrastructure and readiness to support electric-powered vessels. With a shore charging facility in place, the tug will benefit from its full electric capabilities, contributing significantly to reducing the carbon footprint of maritime activities.

Capt. Ammar Mubarak Al Shaiba, CEO – Maritime & Shipping Cluster, AD Ports Group, said: “We are very proud to have the first electric tug in the Middle East join our fleet. Implementing electric tugs into our operations aligns with our local and global and local ambitions for greener maritime operations. AD Ports Group’s commitment to a sustainable future is underscored by adopting such technologies, contributing to the overall reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in the maritime sector.”

Kommer Damen, Chairman of Damen Shipyards Group, said: “We are very pleased that the first electric tug in the Middle East is going to be undertaking operations for SAFEEN Group. The RSD-E 2513 has garnered recognition within the maritime industry, winning the ‘Tug of the Year’ award at the 2022 International Tug & Salvage Awards. This accolade emphasises the vessel’s innovative design and its contribution to environmental sustainability.”

SAFEEN Group delivers a comprehensive portfolio of marine services, shipping, transhipment alongside offshore and subsea solutions and a fleet of state-of-the-art vessels to ensure maximum efficiency and effectiveness. This latest investment marks a pivotal advancement in SAFEEN Group’s maritime operations towards eco-friendly and efficient maritime solutions.

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