Rolls-Royce to supply azimuth thrusters for 18 Chinese tugs

rollsroyceRolls-Royce has received orders worth around GBP 18 million (about $28.5 million) for the supply of azimuth thrusters to power 18 new tugs being built in Chinese shipyards.

Qingdao and Yingkou Ports will take delivery of 12 new tugs, four of which will be the most powerful operating in China. Tangshan and Tangshan Cao Feidian Ports, located in the He Bei province of Northern China, have also placed orders for a total of six tugs.

The 18 vessels will each be equipped with two Rolls-Royce azimuth thrusters. The thrusters comprise an electric motor and a propeller which, as a combined unit can be rotated horizontally in any direction to maneuver the vessel without the need for a rudder.

John Zhang, Rolls-Royce, Manager – Merchant, Greater China, said: "The multiple orders received demonstrate how our cutting edge marine technology is applied to meet our customers' evolving requirements. These exceptionally powerful and highly maneuverable thrusters are critical to supporting the continued growth of the Chinese tug market, and the important role tugs play in facilitating trade."

Such highly powered tugs are new to Chinese ports and are a growing necessity to handle the largest ships now in operation around the globe. In recent years, vessels coming to port in China have increased in size and capacity, with Qingdao Port and Yingkou Port being amongst the earliest to respond to this demand. 

October 17, 2011

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