Photo: Illustration. Courtesy of Uzmar

Uzmar, Robert Allan team up on methanol-powered tugs

Turkish shipyard and tug operator company Uzmar Shipyard and Canadian naval architectural firm Robert Allan have signed an agreement to design and build a new series of methanol-fuelled tugboats.

The two companies inked the agreement for a total of four new designs on 28 April 2022.

As informed, the new designs represent a new generation of low-emission tugs demanded by shipowners to meet CO2 reduction targets.

The name of the methanol-powered tugboat series will be unveiled soon by the two partners.

Specifically, the new series will have improved energy efficiency and will be able to generate a significant amount of annual CO2 emissions savings.

The methanol fuelled series will have length overall (LOA) between 26 meters to 32 meters and include one tractor tug design.

“According to our research that has been ongoing for more than five years, our team believes that within the alternative fuels to fossil fuels, the most applicable and efficient choice for tugboats is methanol,” Ahmet Noyan Altuğ, CEO of Uzmar, commented.

“Signing contracts for this new methanol-powered design series exclusive to Uzmar is a step toward a new era for all of us. We aim to start building the tugs in the last quarter of 2022, and we will reveal the specifications in the following days.”

Uzmar said it intends to replace all the tugboats in its fleet with eco-friendly newbuilds and offer the global market a solution for sustainable low-emission vessels.

In November last year, Robbert Allan also signed an agreement with towage operator Svitzer, part of Maersk, to design the world’s first fuel cell tug for harbour operations, running on green methanol.

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The objective is to extract and apply knowledge and operational experience of methanol feasibility from the nearshore small-scale tug onto larger ocean-going container vessels.

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