Neptune Marine has launched a custom design cable transport barge for Danish power cable solution provider NKT. The pontoon has a very shallow draft to allow it to transport cables over Europe’s inland waterways throughout the year.

The barge, including bespoke cable carousel, will be used to transport power cables from NKT facilities in Cologne, Germany, over the Rhine to the Dutch sea ports. The cables are used for the offshore energy industry. The pontoon can carry several thousand tonnes of cables and due to its shallow-draft design it can operate in very shallow water thereby minimising the effects of low water levels.

The EuroCablePontoon 10022 is 100 metres long and 22 metres wide. To guarantee the main dimensions of the pontoon, the engineering department of Neptune Marine did an extensive design check to calculate all critical parts of the design, including the integration of the cable transport equipment onboard. The pontoon is certified by Bureau Veritas and relevant inland certification bodies.

To minimise the environmental impact, the barge is powered by green electricity during cable loading at the harbour in Cologne where the factory itself is also powered by electricity generated from renewable energy.

Neptune Marine is building the pontoon at its shipyard in Hardinxveld-Giessendam. The location, near the Merwede river, allows Neptune to build vessels and marine equipment in covered facilities up to 160 metres. The pontoon was launched there on 16 September. It is expected the barge will be fully operational in Q4 2020.