-   Smit Panther

The Netherlands shipping company SMIT Internationale NV, short SMIT, ordered more than 140 vessels from different shipyards in the time span between 2004 and 2009. These were among others harbour tugs, AHTS, barges, crew boats, and multi-purpose workboats. Approx. one third of the orders are replacements the balance is for future expansions. Among the vessels are four tugs of the new Damen design type ASD 3213. They were ordered in May 2007 and handed over to SMIT in 2009. They were named as follows:


-   Project phase

The Joint Industry Project Safetug I (Ship Assist in Fully Exposed Conditions) started in June 2005 under the leadership of MARIN (Maritime Research Institute Netherlands) and was completed in 2007. Participants were approx. 30 companies from the oil industry, tug owners, shipyards, and design offices, among them SMIT and Damen. Objective of the projects was to evaluate the behaviour of tugs while assisting at terminals in exposed sea conditions under the influence of waves, wind, and currents. The results were to be used to develop improvements for tugs and equipment. Examined were tug models in test basins and full size tugs. The main emphasis of the examination was originally the improvement of tug designs for use in higher waves. During the examination safety aspects like stability and extreme tug movements – for example roll – became more urgent. The improvement of tug designs was postponed to Safetug II. Parallel to Safetug I Damen began to develop the type ASD 3213, a new terminal and escort tug, designed to at offshore terminals with wave heights of up to 3m. The design incorporates findings from Safetug I, like extreme breadth, big displacement, type of towing winch, and low height of the superstructure. Stability criteria were met and maximum vertical and lateral accelerations were kept within limits this way. The latter were established to provide the crew with a minimum of safety and comfort. The final design was developed in co-operation with SMIT. SMIT ordered the four tugs especially for the new LNG terminal in Maasvlakte in Rotterdam’s Europoort. The tugs were built at Damen’s partner yard Song Cam Shipyard in Haiphong, Vietnam. This yard builds for Damen exclusively. SMIT PANTHER and SMIT JAGUAR were launched on 19. November 2008. They were delivered on 31. May 2009 respectively 23. July 2009. SMIT CHEETAH and SMIT TIGER were launched on 8. March 2009. They were delivered on 18. September 2009 respectively 23. October 2009. SMIT PANTHER was diverted to the LNG Terminal near Venice, Italy, while on her way to Rotterdam. Later she went to Rotterdam. SMIT JAGUAR was chartered to Mumbai, India; the remaining tugs went to Rotterdam. After a stint in Zeebrugge, Belgium the SMIT TIGER returned to Rotterdam. All for tugs were delivered by Redwise and TOS. Twelve tugs are to be built as of this writing, four for SMIT, four for Lamnalco, and four for the stocks. The first Lamnalco tug, the LEOPARD, was delivered in November 2010 with the remaining tug to be delivered until mid of 2011. The Lamnalco tugs are less powerful than the SMIT and stock tugs. One of the stock tugs was delivered as MULTRATUG 3 to Multraship in September 2010.

-   Description

General: The four tugs are typical ASD tugs with two rudder propellers beneath the stern. The hull is built on traverse frame with 550mm spacing. The hull is divided in five watertight compartments. The hull got a considerably enlarged volume in the bow area, a large box keel, a pronounced aft sheer, and an enlarged freeboard at the open stern. Latter makes sailing backwards better and lessens water on the aft deck. The rudder propellers are mounted approx. 4.5m from the stern and tilted approx. 7° backwards to get smaller angles for the universal joints and provide better thrust. The rudder propellers are Rolls Royce type US 285-CP mit controllable pitch propellers of 3.00m diameter running in Kort nozzles. They project approx. 1.65m beneath the hull. The box keel begins approx. 3.00m behind the bow and ends approx. 11.50m in front of the stern. At the aft end it is about 15cm deeper then the rudder propellers. So it provides protection in case of grounding, makes the directional stability better, and provide larger brake and steering forces when towing indirectly. The power is delivered to the propellers by two Caterpillar Diesel engines type C280-8/MC with 2,710bkW (3,364bhp) each at 1.000rpm working on cardan shafts. These engines comply with IMO Tier 2 exhaust regulations, which come into use in 2011. The SMIT tugs achieved maximum free running speeds of 14.2 to 14.4kts forward and 13,8 to 14.0kts astern. The bollard pulls are 94.1 to 94.7t forward and 87.8 to 89.6t astern at 100% MCR. The bunker capacities are 200m3 diesel fuel; 65.6m3 fresh water; 14.3m3 foaming agent, and 3m3 dispersant. The SMIT tugs are equipped according to FiFi1 standard. A Kumera-Norgear step-up gear at the front end of each main engine drives each a Eureka Fire Fighting Systems (Aker Kvaerner) fire water pump type OGF 250x350 and a hydraulic pump for the deck machinery. The fire water pumps supply 2x 1,200m3/h to the two Alco monitors and 2x 200 m3/h to the deluge system. The tugs are classified by Lloyd’s Register as +100A1 Escort Tug +LMC, UMS Fire Fighting Ship 1 with water spray, for unrestricted service. For use in LNG terminals the SMIT tugs are especially equipped. The air supply for engine room and accommodation can be shut down remotely controlled from the wheelhouse. Gas sensors in the air intakes indicate dangerous exposures. The engines are equipped with a “Rigsaver” engine emergency stop system, which shuts down in case the engines draw dangerous gases. The exhaust pipes have spark arrestors and the exterior lighting is explosion-proof. The bow fenders can be lubricated to minimize friction and electrostatic charge.

Tank top deck:

from bow to stern the tank top deck is subdivided into the following areas: Accommodation with two double-berth cabins, laundry, and workshop. Behind follow tanks and the engine room. Besides the elastically mounted main engines with its attached pumps the engine room houses two Caterpillar C9TA diesel generators providing 188kVA, and the starting air system. At the aft end of the engine room is a store for towing gear which is accessible through a hatch from the aft deck. Behind follows the rudder propeller room. In front of the engine room the engine control room and the air conditioning room are located. They are raised about a half deck and located on top of the tanks.

Tween deck:

This deck is located in the bow area above the tank top deck accommodation. Here you find three double-berth cabins with a separate sanitary unit, the owner’s en-suite cabin and a provisions store.

Main deck:

Aft deck: The hydraulic aft towing winch is mounted between the funnels. The winch is a Rolls Royce escort winch type TW 3200-800 and is equipped with a spooling device. It is a so called render & recovery winch. The only drum has a capacity of 600m steel wire of 57mm diameter. The pulling forces are 80t (800kN) at 10m/min and alternatively 8t (80kN) at 80m/min. The winch is able to hold 120t (1,200kN)at 10m/min and alternatively 10t (100kN) at 100m/min when rendering. The brake force is 320t (3,200kN). Directly behind the winch an H-shaped towing fairlead is fitted. At the end of the port funnel a Mampaey towing hook is mounted. It has a safe working load (SWL) of 100t (1,000kN). Shortly behind a Kraaijeveld capstan with a pulling force of 15t (150kN) at 15m/min is fitted. Opposite at starboard a Heila knuckle boom crane type HLM 10-2S is mounted on a foundation. The crane has a SWL of 0.5t (5kN) at a reach of 8.40m and 3.6t (36kN) at 2.74m. The open stern supports a 3.00m long stern roller of 1.20m diameter and a SWL of 126t (1.260kN). The aft deck is wood-clad between towing fairlead and stern roller. The bulwarks are cased on the inside.

Forecastle: It occupies the forward third of the main deck and is raised five steps above the aft deck. In front of the superstructure a hydraulic Rolls Royce combined anchor-, towing, and escort winch type TW3200/1000/AW24U2H is mounted. It too is a render & recovery winch. It has two independent drums, two chain lifters and a warping head. The drums have a capacity of 200m synthetic fibre rope of 72mm diameter each. What the owners put on the drums can be quite different. The winch has pulling forces of 100t (1,000kN) at 10m/min and alternatively 8t (80kN) at 80m/min. The winch holds 145t (1,450kN) at 10m/min while rendering. When rendering with the highest possible speed of 100m/min the winch is able to hold 10t (100kN). The brake force is 320t (3,200kN). According to the rules of the classification society for escort tugs the winches have to be equipped with devices for load damping and automatic, load dependent rendering and recovery of the towing wire. The anchor winch handles two 585kg Pool anchors with each 165m grade U2 anchor chain of 24mm diameter. Chain stoppers are mounted in front of the chain lifters. A high stainless steel clad towing fairlead is mounted in front of the winch. The bulwark is again cased on the inner side and its top is clad with stainless steel, to protect the synthetic fibre rope. The boe is equipped with W-shaped fenders for pushing. Above a soft pipe-shaped fender is mounted on the bulwark.

Superstructure: Captain’s and Chief’s en-suite single berth cabins are located at starboard on main deck level. At port are mess galley and a toilet. The only entrance to the superstructure is from the aft deck. This way a closure state of the superstructure can be easily achieved in case of a gas alarm. The funnels are located at both sides behind the superstructure. The air intake ducts are inside the superstructure in front of the winch. The port funnel contains two stores, the starboard funnel the store for the FM 200 quenching gas. The aft winch is mounted in the bay between the funnels. The tugs don’t carry a life boat.

Bridge deck:

The wheelhouse is located at the aft end of the deck. In front remains a approx. 1.00m wide passage. The floor of the wheelhouse is about 1m higher than the bridge deck. In the space between the decks are switchboards for the bridge electronics placed. Two Alco fire fighting monitors are mounted at the front edge of the bridge deck outside the railings, one at each side. At the aft end of the deck one 16 persons Surviva life raft is placed at each side. The life raft was manufactured by RFD Beaufort Ltd. Two control consoles are fitted to the left and right of the ship’s centreline in the forward part of the wheelhouse. They carry the controls for among others the rudder propellers, winches, lighting, and fire fighting system. At the aft end are two additional consoles with all necessary controls. A tracked captain’s chair is fitted between the consoles. The navigational equipment consists of magnet compass, Furuno satellite compass, Simrad autopilot, two Furuno radars, electronic chart system, Furuno GPS, Furuno echo sounder, Furuno log, and Furuno AIS. The communications equipment corresponds with GMDSS-A3 standard and contains among others Sailor VHF radio, Furuno Navtex, EPIRB, SART, Furuno Inmarsat C, Furuno single-sideband radio, MF/HF radio telephone, satellite telephone, and GSM mobile telephone and fax.

Top deck:

It carries the mast with navigation lights and antennas, two radar antennas, the magnet compass, and at port and starboard forward a Pesch (Seematz) 450 W search light.


There is room for a crew of 13 aboard. The accommodation is constructed with floating floors and insulated linings and ceilings to reduce sound levels to 60-65dBA throughout, including the wheelhouse.

-   Specifications

Length over all: 32.14m
Length between perpendiculars: 31.64m
Breadth over all: 13.29m
Breadth moulded: 12.50m
Depth moulded: 05.40m on summer load line (without Skeg and propulsion)
Draught of hull : 03.97m on summer load line (without Skeg and propulsion)
Draught at propulsion: 0ca. 5.80m on summer load line, max. 6.43m
Survey: 484brz, 145nrz
Displacement: 1035t
Main engines: 2x Caterpillar C280-8/MC diesel engines
Output: 2x 2.710bkW /3.364BPS (totally 5.420bkW/6.728BPS) at 1.000rpm
Speed, forward/astern: 14,2 - 14,4kts / 13,8 - 14,0kts
Bollard pull, forward/astern: 94,1 - 94,7t/ 87,8 - 89,6t

Damen Shipyard:    Data sheets, News     Damen
SMIT:    Tug Magazine     Smit
Rolls Royce Marine Rotterdam:    Technical data     Rolls Royce Marine
Maritime Journal:    numerous reports     Maritime Journal
Lloyd’s Register:    Register print-out     Lloyd’s Register
TransportWeekly:    Report about Damen ASD 3213     TransportWeekly
Ship & Boat International:    Report about Damen ASD 3213     Ship & Boat International
Tugs Towing & Offshore Newsletter:    Report about Damen ASD 3213     Tugs Towing & Offshore

For photos in higher resolution please click the thumbnails!
- -
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Smit Panther in front of Maaslouis Smit Panther in front of Maaslouis
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Smit Panther on Nieuw Waterweg Smit Panther in front of Hoek van Holland
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Smit Panther arriving at Scheurhaven Smit Cheetah in Scheurhaven
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Smit Panther in Scheurhaven Port view of superstructure
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Bow view of superstructure Starboard view of superstructure
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Stern view of Smit Cheetah Stern view of superstructure
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Funnels Stern view of wheelhouse
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Bow view of mast Stern view of mast
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Aft deck Aft towing winch
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Aft towing winch Towing hook
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Hydraulic knuckle boom crane Fire fighting monitor
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Bow towing winch Bow towing winch
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Bow towing fairlead Jason’s Cradle, MOB rescue system
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Forward part of wheelhouse Aft part of wheelhouse
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Galley Engine control room
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Starboard main engine Port main engine
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Fire fighting pump Fire fighting pump
Smit Panther Smit Panther
Diesel generator set Starboard rudder propeller
- -