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Live From Sea Asia 2015
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Caterpillar serves up complete tugboat package

Caterpillar Propulsion [L1-G11] is marketing a new version and range of tugboat packages, which integrate its popular high-speed engines with Azimuth thrusters designed specifically for tugs.

Jonas Nyberg, regional sales manager, Caterpillar Propulsion Singapore, told Sea Asia Today, “There is now a complete Caterpillar solution for tug boats ranging from engine to thruster to control system. It is a fully integrated system sold, distributed and serviced by Caterpillar."

Caterpillar, which is traditionally strong in the continuously-rated Azimuth thrusters for offshore vessels, is bringing its expertise to the tug boat sector with the MTAT series of thrusters.

“We created this solution because we want to leverage on the benefits of the high-speed engine and those of thrusters that are tailor made to these applications,” said Nyberg.

The new thrusters, which are slimmer than the continuously-rated thrusters designed for offshore vessels, will be gradually introduced to the market.

The new MTAT series has two significant features. Its control system is consolidated for the engine and the thruster on the bridge, while its clutch and shaft arrangement is integrated with the engine.

The first of the MTAT series is designed for tugboats of up to 60 tons and has already been rolled out. The rest will make their way into the market by the end of this year or early next year.

“The full range will feature units from 30 to 100 tons,” said Nyberg.

He added that the thrusters could be combined with Caterpillar’s C32, 3500 or C175 engines, which are particularly popular for tugboats.

Nyberg explained, “These high-speed engines have a very fast load response and acceleration, which improve the safety and manoeuvrability of the boats, are greatly superior to medium-speed engines. And since tug boats spend a considerable time on standby, their low idle speed saves on fuel and reduces costs.”

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