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Tuesday, October 29, 2019 

Japanese tug operator Tokyo Kisen and electric propulsion company e5 Lab have jointly developed a new concept design for an electrically driven harbour tug, known as the e5 Tug, powered by a large-capacity battery and a hydrogen fuel cell.

The e5 Tug design is intended to minimise the vessel's environmental footprint. The tug is equipped with a propulsion system running on a powertrain platform devised and planned by e5 Lab, which utilises a large-capacity battery system as its main power source and a hydrogen fuel cell and generator for auxiliary power, with two 1500kW azimuthing thrusters. The system is sized to ensure sufficient bollard pull, at 50t, and continuous cruising time necessary for harbour tug duties, which requires a large power capacity. The fuel cell will reduce CO2 emissions. 

The joint project draws upon the knowledge and experience gained by Tokyo Kisen as a tugboat operator, with e5 Lab undertaking concept planning/development, design, and project management.

The companies hope to proceed with the project through seeking advice from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, ClassNK, and others regarding regulatory compliance. When final investment is confirmed, the e5 Tug will be constructed for commercial operations in Yokohama Port and Kawasaki Port, anticipated in 2022.

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