Wind Energy – Vineyard Wind 1
On or about the 29th of May 2023 the installation vessel Orion will begin installing the first six Monopile Foundations (MPs) and accompanying Transition Pieces (TPS) .
The Orion plans to then install the offshore substation foundation. After that the DEME Offshore vessel will then continue to install the remaining MPs and TPs.
The OSV Atlantic Oceanic will be working alongside the Orion to deploy and recover a Big Bubble Curtain (BBC) system around pile driving operations. A bubble curtain is comprised of a large, perforated hose, coupled with specialized air compressors, that create a barrier of bubbles to dampen and absorb sound.
Before each pile driving operation, the BBC will be deployed on the seafloor, tested, and activated prior to the arrival of the ORION. The BBC hose will be deployed in a pre-determined ring around the foundation position. Installation of each bubble curtain will take approximately 2-4 hours. After completion of pile driving activities, the BBC gear will be recovered by the OSV Atlantic Oceanic and brought to the next foundation installation location.
Additionally, at select foundation locations, the Northstar Navigator will be deploying a secondary BBC system, as part of a pilot program run in partnership with ThayerMahan.
Before pile driving begins on the first MPs, five fixed-location bottom-mounted acoustic recording systems for Sound Field Verification (SFV) will be deployed by the F/V Beth Anne at various locations, ranging from 750m – 8000m relative to the pile. There will be surface floats attached to each recording assembly. They will be in place approximately 1 hour prior to commencement of pile driving activities and will remain in place throughout the full duration of pile driving, before being recovered. SFV is not expected to be needed during subsequent rounds of MP installation.
The Beth Anne will be deploying a Passive Acoustic Monitoring (PAM) system comprised of fixed buoys. The PAM will be used for real-time underwater acoustic monitoring during pile driving to characterize the presence of marine mammals by detecting vocalizations. There will be three to four buoys deployed at any given time for the required PAM operations, depending on the location of active pile driving. The buoys will be deployed and retrieved by Beth Anne personnel before mobilizing to the next foundation location.