26 July 2013

At the end of June, De Telegraaf, the largest newspaper in the Netherlands, concluded its Top 100 competition for Dutch ‘green’ companies. The winners, out of 25 nominees, were Moonen Packaging, Conscious Hotels and Damen Shipyards Group. The top-three greenest companies in the Netherlands were selected by a jury comprising green entrepreneur Ruud Koornstra (known for such innovations as the Pharox LED light bulb), Marjan Minnesma (CEO Urgenda) and HRH Prince Carlos de Bourbon de Parme. Damen was recognised for its ASD Tug 2810 Hybrid.

The jury honoured Damen’s first hybrid tug with the term “Dutch pride”. After the event, De Telegraaf’s port specialist Mr Theo Jongedijk visited the Tugs department at Damen’s HQ in Gorinchem. There, he handed the prize, a ‘Green T’, over to Mr Coen Boudesteijn, Product Director Tugs.

The hybrid tugs are currently being built at Damen Shipyards Galati (Romania). The first vessel will be delivered to launching customer Iskes Towage & Salvage (IJmuiden, the Netherlands).

Hybrid propulsion

The ASD 2810 Hybrid has a diesel-direct, a diesel-electric and a battery-powered propulsion system. The captain can choose which type of propulsion is best suitable for the situation at hand, resulting in 10-30% less fuel consumption and 20-60% lower emissions, depending on how the vessel is used.

The battery system makes it possible to turn off all the engines while continuing to maintain position, manoeuvring and sailing without a tow. Given that tugs spend about 80% of their time waiting for and sailing to a towing job, these features can lead to substantial savings.

In addition, the set of solar panels is used for (emergency) power of 24V consumers (lighting, radio etc.) and the engine starting sytem.

According to jury chairman Ruud Koornstra, the Netherlands has enormous innovative potential. “Creativity, courage, we all have it in us, but sometimes we stick to our old routines too easily. We don’t have to stop using gas, oil and petrol altogether, but we do have to start finding and implementing other solutions. … after all, a green policy that requires a sacrifice of quality of life isn’t sustainable!”

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