Damen builds its first all-electric RSD-E tug

Sparky nearing completion. Image: Damen
Sparky nearing completion. Image: Damen

Reversed stern drive tug major milestone for Vietnamese yard.


By Marc Allen

The Damen Song Cam Shipyard in Vietnam has constructed its first fully-electric reversed stern drive tug (RSD-E). The new vessel has been nicknamed Sparky and is destined for New Zealand’s Ports of Auckland.

Featuring 2,240 batteries, with a total power capacity of 2,784 kWh, Sparky can carry out two or more berthing operations with up to a 70 tonnes bollard pull on a single charge.

Re-charging to full capacity takes just two hours. For reliability the batteries arranged in “strings”; if one string fails the others will continue to function.

Ports of Auckland placed the order for the tug in 2019 with the intention of reaching zero emissions by 2040. Damen is currently adding the finishing touches to the build and anticipates delivery by the end of this year.

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