Home » SAFEEN Trials First Electric Tug in Middle East 

SAFEEN Trials First Electric Tug in Middle East 

by Madaline Dunn

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

The Damen RSD-E Tug 2513 is an all-electric harbour tug and was unveiled during the 27th International Tug & Salvage Convention, Exhibition & Awards 2024, held in Dubai. 

The tug reportedly emits zero emissions from “tank to propeller,” and has a 70-ton bollard pull able to handle the largest vessels.

It was shared that the tug also has lower maintenance costs compared to its diesel-powered counterparts.

According to the company, the tug will initially be operated via generators, which comply with the latest emission IMO tier 3 regulations, which it said 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.

Looking ahead, it was shared that future plans include a shore facility at Khalifa Port capable of delivering 1.5 MW of power for charging, to accommodate such tugs.

Captain Ammar Mubarak Al Shaiba, CEO – Maritime and Shipping Cluster, AD Ports Group, said that implementing the electric tugs into its operations aligns with its local and global 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, added: “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.”

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