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Tug Technology & Business

Tug Technology & Business

New LNG terminal tugs begin Indian operations

Wed 20 Dec 2017 by Martyn Wingrove

New LNG terminal tugs begin Indian operations
Ocean Sparkle's new escort tugs have more than 80 tonnes of bollard pull

Ocean Sparkle has added two Cheoy Lee-built and Robert Allan-designed tugs to its fleet for handling LNG carriers at a terminal in Mumbai, India

One of India’s largest tug owners, Ocean Sparkle, has added two more tugboats to its fleet to assist in one of the nation’s new gas import terminals. Ocean Leader and Ocean Legacy were built in 2017 by Cheoy Lee Shipyards in Hong Kong from a design that provides high bollard pull and fast speeds with stability performance and more than 300 m3 tank capacity.

These 32 m tugs were built to a RAmparts 3200 CL design produced by Robert Allan and modified for this project by Cheoy Lee. They started operating at a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in Mumbai, India in December and boost the Ocean Sparkle fleet to more than 80 tugboats.

They were constructed to Lloyd’s Register requirements with notation 100A1Tug for sea-going service and efficient anchoring and mooring equipment. They also have LMC Lloyd's Machinery Certificates and notations for fire-fighting and unrestricted service.

Ocean Leader and Ocean Legacy have moulded beams of 12.4 m and maximum draughts of 5.3 m. During sea trials they both exceeded all performance expectations, said Robert Allan, delivering 72 tonnes of bollard pull and free running speeds of 13 knots.

Their main propulsion includes a pair of Niigata 6L28HX diesel engines, each rated at 1,838 kW at 750 rpm. These each drive a Niigata ZP-41 fixed pitch propeller with a high grade nozzle Z-drive unit. These are installed in an azimuthing stern drive configuration.

The electrical plant comprises two diesel generator sets, each with a power output of 120 kWe. Ocean Leader and Ocean Legacy also each have a 50 kWe generator set for operations when in harbour. They each have a FiFi1 rated fire-fighting system with a dedicated engine below deck and monitors located on the aft side of the deckhouse.

Ocean Leader and Ocean Legacy have a series of ship-handling and vessel protecting fenders. At their bows, there are two rows of 800 mm by 400 mm cylindrical fenders at the main deck level and a W-shaped fender of 480 mm by 300 mm below deck. There is a W block type fender of 500 mm by 450 mm at the stern. Along the main deck sheer line and along the knuckle there is a hollow D-shaped fender of 300 mm by 300 mm.

Cheoy Lee has built 33 tugboats to the Robert Allan CL series and in November it gained orders for three of the designer’s Z-Tech 5000 design tugboats, two for PSA Marine and one for South China Towing Co, which is a joint venture between PSA Marine, Mitsui OSK Lines and Tokyo Kisen Co.

This hull design and deck layout are said to combine advantages of modern azimuthing stern drive tugs and tractor tugboat designs. Cheoy Lee expects construction of these three tugs will be completed in Q4 2018.

Its Hong Kong shipyard also produces mooring launches. Its latest completion was Eimeo, for Half-Tide Marine. It was built to another Robert Allan design, the RAscal 1600 mooring launch. It started operating at the Dalrymple Bay coal terminal, south of Mackay in Queensland, Australia in December.

In October, Cheoy Lee turned to Macduff Ship Design for a 14 m mooring and towage workboat that is being built for line handling and harbour tug duties.


Ocean Leader and Ocean Legacy particulars

  • Owner:                                    Ocean Sparkle
  • Builder:                       Cheoy Lee
  • Class:                           Lloyd’s Register
  • Designer:                     Robert Allan
  • Design:                        RAmparts 3200 CL
  • Bollard Pull:                73 tonnes
  • Maximum speed:        13 knots
  • Length, oa:                  32 m
  • Beam, mld:                  12.4 m
  • Draught, max:             5.3 m



Tank capacities:

  • Fuel oil:           230 m3
  • Potable water:     48 m3
  • Lube oil:          3 m3
  • Hydraulic oil:  0.7 m3
  • Sludge:            3.5 m3
  • Oily water:      4.5 m3
  • Sewage:           4.5 m3
  • Grey water:     1.5 m3
  • Foam:              10 m3

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