Rolls-Royce is active in China, in hydrogen and on tugs. We tell you three news items, in brief, among Friedrichshafen’s many moves on the international arena.

Rolls-Royce R&D in China

Rolls-Royce business unit Power Systems is strengthening its research and development (R&D) capabilities in China with a new test bench for mtu engines at the company’s location in Suzhou. The new test bench was inaugurated as part of an event celebrating 25 years of the Rolls-Royce location’s existence. The R&D test bench can accommodate mtu engines with a power output of up to 3,600 kW and will be used to test parts, engines and complete systems for power generation and industrial applications. The new R&D test bench in Suzhou will first be used for test runs of gensets based on mtu 16V 4000 engines, starting in 2022. It is suitable for testing a wide range of versions of the versatile Series 4000 engine which is also celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. A further upgrade of the test bench is planned for 2022: The capabilities will be extended to testing mtu Series 2000 engines as well.

Hydrogen at COP26

Rolls-Royce presented its mtu fuel cell system for a future CO2-free energy supply for the first time at the UN Climate Change Conference [COP26] in Glasgow, Scotland. The complete solution for power supply in the megawatt range will be produced in series from 2025. Rolls-Royce is also developing fuel cell systems for ships and, as part of its Net Zero at Power Systems climate protection programme, is preparing its most important engine series for the use of sustainable fuels. Hydrogen and methanol engines are also being developed as part of this programme, as well as concepts for decentralised power-to-X plants. Power-to-x is a process that converts green electricity into storable fuel.

mtu engines for 80-ton bollard pull tugboats in Brazil

Rolls-Royce has secured a significant contract to supply eight of its mtu 16V 4000 M65L engines for four 80-ton bollard pull tugboats to be built by Detroit Brasil, Ltda. and operated by Starnav Servicos MaritimosLtda. The new tugs will feature a hybrid propulsion system, combining the mtu engines and mtu Blue Vision New Generation (BVNG) monitoring system with Z-drive thrusters, hybrid components and controls from Schottel, a manufacturer of propulsion and steering systems for ships and offshore applications.

While Rolls-Royce has supplied mtu Series 4000 engines to Detroit Brasil for several vessel projects in the past, this marks the first time Rolls-Royce will be supplying engines for 80-ton- bollard pull tugboats to the company and the first time that the high performance mtu 16V 4000 M65L engines which deliver 2560 kW at 1,800 rpm will be used in Latin America. Once the new tugs are entered into service, Starnav ServiçosMarítimos Ltda. will run a total of 96 mtu Series 4000 engines in their fleet of harbor tugs and offshore vessels.


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