Recent weeks have seen a steady stream of news on the delivery and order front with strong European domination but also including global involvement within the tug building industry.

MJ recently reported delivery of a 19-vessel order by Damen for AAS Amur Assets Shipping Limited, a joint venture with Combi Lift GmbH supporting its role in the Amur Gas Processing Plant 150km from Russia’s border with China. As well as 11 Stan Pontoons and four Side Floaters, of interest to this column is the inclusion of four Multi Cat 2608SD workboats and four Pusher Tug 2612SDs. The latter have variable-height wheelhouses ensuring visibility over extra-large cargoes on the barges.

Turning now to three deliveries from two Turkish shipyards, first is the RAmparts 2300-MM Med XXV built for Med Marine by the company’s own Eregli Shipyard and second of a six-vessel series. This Robert Allan Ltd design is available in 35, 50 and 60tbp versions and while all have Caterpillar main engines and gensets, the two lower bollard pull variants feature Schottel thrusters while the 60tbp version is equipped with Rolls-Royce thrusters.

Med XXV is a 50tbp variant with Caterpillar 3512C main engines delivering 2,760bkW in total driving Schottel SRP340 thrusters. A custom-made SEC Groningen towing winch is fitted forward with a tow post and Data Hidrolik hook aft.

Sanmar Shipyards report two deliveries in the period, first being the RAstar 2800 Laziale for Rimorchiatori Laziali SpA. The Italian operator is a regular return customer for Sanmar and this latest is first of a pair headed across the Aegean Sea.

Caterpillar main engines develop 5,050kW driving Rolls-Royce thrusters providing a bollard pull of 81.4t and free-running speed 14kn. The RINA-classed tug meets fifi1 notation and is particularly well-equipped for towing with heavy-duty Rolls-Royce towing winch aft and split-drum escort winch from the same manufacturer forward in addition to 100t SWL towing hooks forward and aft. A sponsoned hull form provides increased stability and comfort for an eight strong crew during operations at exposed offshore terminals.

Second Sanmar delivery is deja-vu in a way with SMS Towage of Hull UK returning for its ninth vessel from the Turkish yard. Pullman is a Sirapinar-class Sanmar exclusive satisfying the demand for ever tighter cost controls from more bollard pull in ever more compact hulls. The 22.4m tug employs Caterpillar/Schottel engine and thruster arrangements providing a bollard pull of 45t with a DMT towing winch forward and tow hook and capstan aft.

Final delivery from mainland Europe this month involves VB Ceballos, vessel number four in a 10-vessel series from Zamakona Shipyards for Boluda Towage and Salvage. Vessel number one VB Xaloc delivered in 2016 provided an indication of what was to be an impressive and significantly advanced RAL designed, Voith Schneider powered, fifi1 tug with Caterpillar MaK main engines producing 7,500hp and a respectable 80tbp.

Described as ‘smart ship type’ tugs they are capable of real-time data transmission, Boluda seen as a pioneer with this advanced technology also developing its own on-board energy efficiency system with automated control systems reducing energy consumption and emissions.

Looking at deliveries of note beyond Europe, Triyards SSY in Vietnam, by contract to Greenbay Marine Services of Singapore has delivered the RAstar 3400, sponson-hulled escort/terminal tugs Murjan 1, 2, 3 and 4 to Star Marine Ltd of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia to be stationed in the Red Sea port of Rabigh. The BV-classed, Wärtsilä-powered tugs recorded a maximum bollard pull of 73t on trials and feature DMT winches both forward and aft along with accommodation for 10 persons.

Turning to orders, Boluda France has ordered a new series of OST 30-class tugs from Piriou Shipyard, delivery of the first two scheduled for 2019. The 30m tugs, for use in French harbours will provide 77tbp and follows previous orders for 15 similar tugs since 2007.

Finally, we return to the start with news that Damen has signed a contract with Corpetrolsa Group of Ecuador for a Stan Tug 1205 and two Stan Tug 1606s. The hulls were already in stock and are to be supplied without modification with only four months expected between first contact and delivery. No doubt this column will return in more detail to these two orders in forthcoming editions.