Robert Allan Ltd., Western Maritime Institute, and Corvus Energy Limited announced that a contract will be signed for the design and construction of the world's first "green" training tugs at the International Tug & Salvage (ITS 2010) Conference, to be held in Vancouver in May 2010. Western Maritime Institute (WMI) is an accredited marine training institute located near Ladysmith on Vancouver Island, providing a wide range of operational and safety training courses for marine personnel at all levels. WMI is scheduled to take delivery of two BRAtt Class training vessels, one fully electric, and one hybrid-electric in 2011. This will coincide with the introduction of its DNV certificated, advanced tug and pilot ship-handling courses, offering to the tug operators of the world the first such commercially certified training program with an international focus. WMI will be the first such institute anywhere in the world with dedicated Z-drive training vessels.
The BRAtt training tugs are the brainchild of Ron Burchett and Robert Allan Ltd., the result of a collaboration that recognized the global need for cost-effective Z-drive training vessels for today's commercial and naval ship Masters. These vessels are designed exclusively by Robert Allan Ltd. Naval Architects of Vancouver, and will be built by Adrenalin Marine Ltd. of Delta, BC, which has been selected as the licensed builder for all BRAtts in North America. The very first BRAtt, a direct diesel-powered version, will be on display at ITS 2010, and will be available for demonstration to all ITS registrants. The 7.8 metre long, 450 horsepower BRAtt features most of the same technology and operating systems as its full-size sister Z-drive tugs, so that operators can be trained to safely handle the more expensive and larger tugs that have become common in the world's major ports, without putting those major assets at risk. Although primarily intended as a training vessel, the BRAtt is also designed to be an affordable alternative to full-sized tugs for harbour duties such as boom deployment, yarding, and line-handling, etc.
Corvus Energy designs and manufactures Lithium-ion battery systems for vessels from the size of a BRAtt to commercial ocean-going vessels. Corvus has developed the electrical propulsion power systems for both these vessels in close collaboration with Robert Allan Ltd.