Caterpillar Celebrates Christening of First North American Vessel with Complete Cat® Marine Solution


Seattle, Washington – Caterpillar is pleased to announce the christening of DR. HANK KAPLAN, the first vessel in North America to feature a complete Cat Marine propulsion system with both Cat power and Cat azimuth drives. Owned by Seattle-based Harley Marine Services, this tug has a length of 80’, a beam of 36’ and a depth of 13’7”. The vessel is equipped with two 3516C marine propulsion engines, each delivering 2675 hp (1995 kW) to a pair of MTA 524-T azimuth thrusters specifically designed for high performance applications.

 “Caterpillar is proud to power a vast number of vessels in the Harley Marine fleet,” said Tom Frake, vice president of Caterpillar’s Global Power Solutions Division. “With the christening of DR. HANK KAPLAN, Harley Marine will be the first North American customer to feature our fully integrated propulsion system as well as our legendary power products. Our ability to offer a complete solution to the Tug industry simplifies design and build as well as product support for customers, while showing our commitment to the Marine industry,” said Frake.

The new Cat MTA 524-T azimuth thruster is the latest iteration of Caterpillar Propulsion’s proven thruster line, specifically optimized for the unique operation profile of a tug. Based on the standard MTA design, this updated version includes features to maximize bollard pull, simplify installation and maintenance, and increase maneuverability.

“We’ve taken pride in helping Harley Marine continue to expand their fleet over the last twenty years,” said Rob Coon, managing director of Caterpillar Financial Products Division. “The christening of this vessel signifies a successful team effort between Cat Financial, Cat Marine, Peterson Power, and Harley Marine.  It’s exciting to see the culmination of our close relationships now result in Harley Marine christening the very first vessel in North America with a complete Caterpillar solution,” said Coon.

Cat dealer Peterson Power out of Portland, OR led the efforts on the project, helping refine the spec and eventually supporting the installation and service of these systems. Further enhancing the total Cat Solution, Cat Financial provided construction and term financing for the entire vessel.

Designed by Robert Allen Limited in Vancouver, the tug was built at Diversified Marine in Portland, Oregon and is a sister class vessel to the recently built MICHELLE SLOAN and LELA FRANCO.

The vessel was named after the Chief of Medical Oncology at Swedish Cancer Institute, Dr. Hank Kaplan as a tribute to his tireless dedication to cancer treatment and research.  Harley & Lela Franco along with the entire Harley Marine organization have been instrumental in supporting Dr. Kaplan’s fundraising efforts.  Over the past five years alone, their annual fundraising event has contributed a remarkable $2,500,000 in funding to the Swedish Cancer Institute that has made a tremendous impact on the lives of cancer patients and their families.

About Harley Marine Services

Harley Marine Services is a full service marine transportation company providing quality services along the United States West Coast, Alaska, New York/New Jersey Harbor and the U.S. Gulf. Services provided include the transportation and storage of petroleum products, ship assist and escort, and the transportation of general cargo. Harley Marine companies aim to set the benchmark for quality operations by outstanding safe, responsible, reliable, and efficient performance in the marine transportation and petroleum industries. For more information, please visit

About Caterpillar Marine

Caterpillar Marine, with headquarters in Hamburg, Germany, groups all the marketing and service activities for Cat and MaK™ marine diesel, dual fuel and gas power and propulsion systems within Caterpillar Inc. The organization provides premier power solutions in the medium- and high-speed segments with outputs from 93 to 16,800 kW in main propulsion and 10 to 16,100 kWe in marine generator sets as well as a comprehensive portfolio of propulsion solutions. The sales and service network includes more than 2,100 dealer locations world-wide dedicated to support customers in ocean-going, commercial marine and pleasure craft wherever they are. For more information on Caterpillar Marine, visit us at Follow us on Facebook:, Twitter: @catmarineglobal, LinkedIn: and YouTube:

About Caterpillar

For over 90 years, Caterpillar Inc. has been making sustainable progress possible and driving positive change on every continent.  Customers turn to Caterpillar to help them develop infrastructure, energy and natural resource assets. With 2016 sales and revenues of $38.5 billion, Caterpillar is the world’s leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel-electric locomotives.  The company principally operates through its three product segments - Construction Industries, Resource Industries and Energy & Transportation - and also provides financing and related services through its Financial Products segment.  For more information, visit  To connect with us on social media, visit


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