Rolls-Royce to deliver engines and propulsion systems for LNG powered tugs

15 January 2012 (Last Updated January 15th, 2012 18:30)

Rolls-Royce has signed a contract to deliver engines and propulsion systems for the world's first Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) fueled tugs.

Rolls-Royce has signed a contract to deliver engines and propulsion systems for the world’s first Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) fueled tugs.

The two tugs have been ordered by Norwegian company Buksér og Berging and will enter service in late 2013 for Statoil and Gassco.

Rolls-Royce SVP of merchant, propulsion systems and engines Robert Løseth said this is a breakthrough for the company’s Bergen gas engines and cutting edge propulsion technology.

"The choice our customer has made highlights the industry leading engine performance, fuel consumption and low methane emissions that Rolls-Royce can offer, which is now being applied to tugs," Løseth said.

The company will also deliver a mechanical direct driven azimuth propulsion system for each tug, in addition to the two gas engines and a single LNG tank system, which will provide the quick and responsive maneuvering important for tug operators.

The company said the vessels will be the first to use the newly designed Rolls-Royce US35 azimuth thrusters, which have improved hydrodynamic performance and hull integration. The combined power and propulsion system will also enable 30% reduction in CO2 emissions in all operating modes and the company will also provide automation and control systems for the two escort vessels.

In December 2011, Buksér og Berging won the NOK900m ($150m) contract from Statoil for the two escort tugboats to service the Kårstø processing plant on behalf of operator Gassco. The two escort tugboats will assist the ships calling at Kårstø, which are fitted with the latest technology available, and run on liquefied natural gas (LNG).

The contract included a charter of two escort tugboats on a full-time basis and an option to charter a harbour tugboat.