Photo: KOTUG

KOTUG: 1st electric E-Pusher Type M enables zero-emission inland shipping

Dutch towage and maritime company KOTUG is starting with zero-emission transportation of Cargill cocoa beans from the Port of Amsterdam to Zaandam.

KOTUG
KOTUG E-Pushe Type M. Image by KOTUG

As informed, the company will deploy the KOTUG E-Pusher type M and four barges for zero-emission barging of cocoa beans.

The vessel is equipped with swappable battery energy containers from Shift Clean Energy (Shift), which is part of the innovative design of the vessel and will utilize Shift’s battery swapping and charging stations.

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Cargill will be the first company with this fully electrified industrial setup for inland shipping. With the 100% electric E-Pusher, KOTUG supports companies that want to build more resilient and sustainable supply chains.

The modular and scalable electric pusher tug is powered by swappable energy containers. With this zero-emission solution, KOTUG supports the worldwide energy transition and the modal shift from road transport to waterways.

Furthermore, due to the modular approach and lean assembly method, KOTUG reduced the construction time by more than half compared to traditional pusher boats. The E-Pusher type M can push barges with up to 4,000 tons of cargo.

The E-Pusher Series consists of three types — small, medium and large — respectively for transportation in inner cities, over short distances and the larger inland waterways.

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Improving CAPEX and OPEX

By using barges, the E-Pusher concept contributes to a more efficient operation compared to traditional vessels.

Efficiency is also achieved with the swappable energy container from SHIFT Clean Solutions; changing the container at one of the battery hubs on the go is done in a few minutes. In addition, empty batteries can be recharged at night, taking advantage of possible energy surpluses in the grid.

Shift’s PwrSwäp Solutions

Shift provides swappable energy containers that utilize its zero-emission ESS battery systems which range from 70kWH to 6MWh.

These modular ESS battery systems are charged through clean power generation from (bio)gas, hydrogen, and other renewable energy sources either onboard the vessels or at Shift’s dedicated PwrSwäp energy stations.

By swapping these ESS battery systems, uptime is maximized for the vessel owners.

“We launched the E-Pusher concept in 2021, and the smaller type, the E-Pusher S (the ‘CityBarge One’), is already successfully deployed in several inland waterways and cities. I am very proud that an international company like CARGILL is our first customer for the E-Pusher type M. The vessel is designed for transportations like these and guarantees zero-emission logistics and a significantly approved efficiency,” Ard-Jan Kooren, President & CEO of KOTUG International, commented.

“As a result, we can support a broad range of industries to turn a part of their supply chain emission-free without extra costs. The applications of the E-Pusher are endless and vary from the transportation of (construction) waste to construction materials to all kinds of products and packages.”

“We are thrilled to partner with KOTUG for the supply of the swappable batteries for the revolutionary E-Pusher™ type M. With our PwrSwäp charging stations along the route, as part of the broader Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp route, we can eliminate any concerns on range anxiety,” Paul Hughes, President & Co-Founder Shift Clean Energy, said.

“In our opinion, overcoming this important hurdle will open the door to large-scale electrification of vessels, and thus to zero-emission water transportation. Our PwrSwäp charging stations will be multi-fuel and open access and will provide an important infrastructure improvement for ports and cities as they progress their emissions reduction programs. This is a great start.”

”I applaud these kinds of developments and initiatives. As the largest cocoa import port in the world, many cocoa beans arrive here in Amsterdam. It’s great that these can be transported emission-free between the warehouses in our port and the Cargill factories in Zaandam. We want to move towards a climate-neutral port, so the fewer emissions, the better,” Alma Prins, Head Cargo and Offshore at Port of Amsterdam, noted.

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