Home /Up-to-Date

Leadership in designing tugboats

V.B. Bravo tugboat.

V.B. Bravo tugboat.

In its 60 years’ experience in marine design and engineering, SENER has become a leading tugboat design company. SENER’s experience in this field has made it possible to develop a wide range of tugboats with the highest levels of quality: from small, efficient port tugs, to port and high-seas tugs, up to powerful high-seas salvage or rescue tugs.

There is an ever-increasing demand for more efficient ships with lower consumption that can be built with construction systems that are sustainable for shipbuilders. SENER is well aware of how these objectives affect each tugboat design phase, from their initial conceptual design to their basic and detail designs. Furthermore, not only does SENER provide the entire design, it also provides technical assistance as an additional service, taking responsibility for inspections throughout the construction process.

The tugs SENER designs can be powered with azimuthing propellers, as in the 39.70-m long Spanish salvage and rescue ship María de Maeztu, which has a dead weight of 464 tons and a 60-ton towing capacity. Another tugboat with an azimuth propulsion system is the 35.46-m long V.B. Bravo of the Boluda Group in Spain, with a 444-ton dead weight and 100-ton towing capacity.

In addition to their azimuthing propellers, these ships can also be equipped with Voith Schneider cycloidal propulsion, as in the case of the tug Solan, which was built for Great Britain in the shipyards of Valencia, and which has Voith propellers. Measuring 40 m long, this tug has a dead weight of 292 tons and a towing capacity of 70 tons. Other ships with this type of propulsion include: the Tommaso Honorato of Moby S.P.A. (Italy), the Bonxie (Scotland) and Tugs 40, 41, 42 and 43 of Antwerp (Belgium). In addition to azimuth and cycloidal propulsion, SENER offers conventional propulsion, which is also used in tugboat designs.

The versatility of SENER’s designs is one of the main factors that set it apart from its competitors. As an example of this, SENER has developed a multi-purpose support vessel, the MSSV, for underwater jobs, and particularly for light construction using remote operated vehicles (ROVs). This 112.824 m long ship with two azimuthing propellers has a main deck reinforced for transporting heavy loads and is equipped with a heliport.

SENER has design ships in all continents for public companies such as the Spanish Maritime Salvage Company, the Port of Antwerp, the Port of Haifa (Israel), and the Shetland Islands (Scotland), in addition to private firms. This latter category includes the companies Boluda, Trans-Ona, and Servicios Marítimos de Baja California.

Lastly it is important to note the role SENER has played as the developer of the ship design software FORAN, which provides its clients with greater value and quality by perfecting new designs and constantly improving the system’s functions.


The Solan tugboat. Artistic image of the MSSV.

Copyright SENER 2021