Wind energy – installation features
Offshoretronic from Spain announces new installation features and enlarge capabilities for their Offshore Wind Installation Vessels to meet with the next generation Wind Turbine Generator (WTG) foundation requirements of 15 up to 20 MW.
The company has developed a new game-changing transportation and installation method by utilizing a unique Dual Crane Lifting and Transportation technique for the offshore installation of ultra-long XXL monopiles (over 100 meters). As WTG continue to get bigger, the monopiles become larger in size with diameters beyond 10 metres and lengths far over 100 metres.
To ensure safe and successful pile installation without pile-tip damage and buckling during transport, lifting and installation the monopiles will need to be supported over larger areas.
Making an offshore lift with one single lifting point will increase the risk of buckling and damaging the pile-tip ring of ultra-long XXL Monopiles. This risk will make many vessels of the existing fleet of heavy lifting crane vessels with one single heavy lift crane unit, obsolete for the purpose of performing this installation task with the next generation ultra-long XXL Monopiles.
Pile buckling has to be prevented as a key priority and we have create the best possible economic and time-efficient installation methods. Additional large cost savings will be achieved by eliminating expensive mission equipment’s like up-ending tools, latitude cross beam, transport frames, pile supports and pile skidding transporters to bring the monopile within the reach of the crane and support the up-ending.
Logistics is becoming the key in Offshore Wind and by double stacking the monopiles Offshoretronic creates a very competitive solution while other vessels can only carry a maximum of three or four monopiles. One other large cost saving feature is to install the monopile with a Vibro hammer up to 50-70% of the final pile penetration. This eliminates the use of expensive pile gripper systems and all associated risk of damaging the monopile and errors to the DP capabilities of the crane vessel. When the monopile reach a penetration point of over 50% the Vibro Hammer with integrated pile gripper can safely release and final installation can be performed by hydraulic impact piling hammer if needed. This operation can be performed at a later point or performed by smaller vessels to safe further cost.
The sustainable installer & sustainable transporter vessels will be able to transport and install in one single turnaround 12 ultra-long XXL monopile equal to 240 MW of WTG foundations. The combination of two equal size and shaped Vessels will create the best possible workability windows.
The tender and transport Vessel will be able to support cost efficient ways to cope with the Jones act requirement in US waters. While the sustainable installer can stay at the US Windfarms for installations works, the sustainable transporter can tender from non-US ports to supply 6 ultra-large XXL monopiles in one single turnaround.
“In the coming years offshore wind end-users are expected to go mainly for larger wind turbines in the range of 15-20 MW,” says Project Director Jeroen Berkhout.
Industry researchers and analysts predict a large shortage in 2025 of heavy lift crane vessels to cope with the increased worldwide demands and the increased size of foundations.
Over the last 8 months Offshoretronic has worked hard on the verification and validation of the design. From Offshoretronic’s internal and external studies the management draw a new set of conclusions:
40 % Faster T&I time and cost reductions
“Simulations and calculations show up to 40% reduction in installation time and cost of the offshore installation of the next generation ultra-long XXL WTG foundations.”
100% deployment in the energy transition offshore wind & DECOM
“Vessels are specifically designed for 100% deployment in new offshore wind farm installations and removal of obsolete O&G infrastructure (so called DECOM works).”
70% reduction in CO2 emissions with the vessel conversion project compare to new build
“By utilizing obsolete UDW drillship assets, Offshoretronic is are able to build a new state-of-the-art crane vessel with the lowest environmental impact possible.”
40% lower building cost compared to new build vessel units with the same specifications
“With the latest cost increases for steel, equipment and shipyard prices in general, this project will generate the largest CAPEX cost savings. In addition, if the vessel will be operated in Europe the European Union will impose additional carbon border costs on imports of certain vessels by 2023. Based on the additional CO2 taxes applied to new build vessels, this could be in Offshoretronic’s favour and will reach further cost savings over 50%.”