Over the past few months KOTUG International, which has its HQ in Rotterdam, has announced a number of additions to its tug fleet and plans for further expansion. An important component in the KOTUG fleet is the unique Rotor Tug concept invented by
Ton Kooren, founder of KOTUG. First introduced in 1999, the Rotor Tug, with its triple azimuthing unit propulsion system, has proliferated, over 30 vessels are now in use, and the number is growing.
In March an order was placed with two shipbuilders for the first four of a new generation of Rotor Tugs, designated the ART 80-32 and designed by Canadian naval architects and consultants Robert Allan Ltd (RAL) of Vancouver. Damen Shipyards Group will build two hybrid versions and Cheoy Lee Shipyards in Hong Kong will build two with ‘all-diesel’ propulsion systems and equipped for fire fighting.
The involvement of RAL represents an industry milestone in Rotor tug
ABOVE: ‘Rotor tug’ ART 80-32 class represents the latest generation in the unique triple-screw concept.
development. The Rotor tug ART 80-32 class is the first to be designed for Rotor tug BV under a recent agreement naming RAL as exclusive designer of future Rotor Tugs. Tugs of the new class will be 32m overall by 12.6m and have a propulsion system delivering 3 x 1,765kW, to achieve a bollard pull of 80 tonnes. They will be capable of precise manoeuvrability forwards, astern and sideways.
As part of its global strategy, KOTUG continues to invest in modern and powerful tugs to provide services in a growing number of locations. During the spring KOTUG purchased three ASD tugs, all procured on very short time scales. The first, the former Scandinavian tug Boa Njord, arrived in April and is now in service as the SD Salvor. Built in 2010, the vessel is a Robert Allan Rampart 3000 class deep-sea tug.