Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Crowley to Build, Operate 1st Fully Electric U.S. Tugboat

Crowley Maritime Corp. will build and operate eWolf, the first all-electric powered harbor tugboat that can complete a job without expending a drop of fuel, the company announced July 12.

The electric tug will replace one that consumes more than 30,000 gallons of diesel per year. The eTug, which will operate at the Port of San Diego’s Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, is expected to be operational by mid-2023.

The 82-foot vessel with 70 tons of bollard pull advances Crowley and the maritime industry’s efforts toward sustainability and decarbonization. Over the first 10 years of its use, the operation of the eTug is expected to reduce 178 tons of nitrogen oxide (NOx), 2.5 tons of diesel particulate matter, and 3,100 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) versus a conventional tug.

The eTug will be built by Master Boat Builders in Coden, Alabama, utilizing the design and on-site construction management by Crowley Engineering Services and its recently integrated Jensen Maritime naval architecture and marine engineering group. The vessel’s battery system will be charged at a specially designed, shoreside station developed with Cochran Marine.

It will also feature a design that allows the vessel to operate fully electric with full performance capabilities – and zero carbon emissions, according to Crowley Maritime. The eTug will feature a fully integrated electrical package.

“Our dedicated shipbuilding employees are proud to be working with Crowley to lead innovation with the construction of this first-of-its-kind tugboat,” Master Boat Builders President Garrett Rice said. “This vessel will set a standard in the U.S. maritime industry for sustainability and performance, and its zero-emissions capability and autonomous technology will benefit the environment and the safety of mariners and vessels.”

The eTug is being built as a result of a partnership between Crowley, the San Diego County Air Pollution Control District, the California Air Resources Board, the Port of San Diego, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Maritime Administration, all of which provided financial support and other resources.