GE Marine, a unit of GE Transportation, and the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) announced today the start of the commissioning of 13 tugboats for use in the Panama Canal. The 26-engine order represents the largest in the history of GE Marine.
The sale of the 12-cylinder V228 engines through GE’s engine distributor Marinsa was finalized in October 2008. The vessels are being built by Cheoy Lee Shipyards of Hong Kong, the first of which arrived in Panama last week; all of the ships are scheduled to arrive by June 2012.
In October, ACP celebrated the transit of the one millionth vessel through the Canal since its inauguration in 1914, and the new tugboats will be used to continue to transport tankers and barges through the Canal safely and efficiently.
“GE is proud to partner with ACP, Cheoy Lee and Marinsa on this exciting project that will facilitate even smoother traffic through one of the world’s engineering marvels,” said John Manison, Business Leader of GE Marine. “GE’s engines will provide world-class seaworthy power to vessels.”
“Cheoy Lee has been building sea vessels of all kinds for more than a century,” said Ken Lo, Director of Cheoy Lee. “This effort is yet another example of how the business has stayed at the forefront of the marine industry, and we look forward to working with ACP and GE in the future.”
GE's V228 engines are high-compression, four-stroke, medium-speed, turbocharged, electronically fuel injected, class-approved engines designed and built for rigorous marine applications. With rugged construction and quality-assured parts, V228 engines are capable of operating cost-effectively for more than 20 years.
The engines will be built in GE’s world-class engine manufacturing facility in Grove City, Pennsylvania.