Wednesday, April 1, 2020
Maritime Propulsion

Posted by December 9, 2019

Rolls-Royce, RAL Collaborate on LNG Pushboat

DNV-GL issued an Approval In Principle to Robert Allen Ltd for its shallow-draft pushboat design developed in conjunction with Rolls-Royce, featuring MTU gas engines from Rolls-Royce. (Photo: Rolls-Royce)

Rolls-Royce and Canadian vessel designers Robert Allan have developed the world's first shallow-water push boat powered by LNG natural gas engines. 

DNV GL gave its “Approval in Principle” to the new design at the International Workboat Show in New Orleans. 

“The interest of the market regarding the design study of Robert Allan and Rolls-Royce confirms that the decision was right to develop a lean-burn gas engine. We have found operators across the globe who have seen the benefits of operational costs in addition to the reduction of environmental impact,” says Christof von Bank, Director of Sales, Marine & Offshore Americas.

Powered by two MTU 8V4000M55RN natural gas engines from Rolls-Royce and designed for use on inland waterways, the push boat is more cost-effective to operate, and produces less pollutants and climate-unfriendly exhaust gases than vessels with conventional propulsion systems.

Rolls-Royce and Robert Allan collaborated to design the gas-powered shallow-water push boat based on the proven Robert Allan RApide 2800-Z2 design which is already used on some diesel-powered vessels on the River Amazon. The vessel design was specially modified for LNG to accommodate the two 746 kW MTU 8V4000M55RN engines (complete with IMO Tier III emission control systems) and the entire LNG supply system – also available from Rolls-Royce – as well as the gas control and safety systems and the overall vessel control system.

The hull – externally unchanged – was redesigned to accommodate the 70 cubic meter gas tank as well as the usual engine accoutrements, and to provide crew with a pleasant working environment. The lower crew cabins, saloon and galley were moved up one level, and the deckhouse was enlarged.

Technical data for the RApide 2800-G shallow-water push boat:

  • Engines: 2 x MTU 8V 4000 M55RN, IMO Tier III
  • Power output: 746 kW each
  • Length overall: 28 m
  • Beam: 10.05 m
  • Topsides: 3.2 m
  • Draught: 2.5 m
  • LNG tank capacity: 70 m³


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