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Escort operations involve the use of escort tugs to help maneuver large vessels, such as tankers, through constrained or dangerous passages. Tugs use bow-mounted winches, and tow-lines attached to the stern of the escorted vessel, to impart steering forces (to change the escorted vessels direction) and/or braking forces (to slow or stop the escorted vessel). The escort tug uses the resistance of its hull, the power of its thrusters and the angle of the towline to aid the control of the escorted ship.

Escort Modes

  • Direct: The escorting tug is generally facing against the direction of travel of the escorted ship.
  • Indirect: The escorting tug is generally facing in the same direction of travel as the escorted ship.

Design Considerations

Escort vessels require large amounts of power, visibility, maneuverability, and stability in order to track the course of the escorted vessel and effectively impart adjustments to its course and speed.

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