Although Seaway 7’s new offshore wind turbine foundation installation vessel Seaway Alfa Lift already went on sea trials in early January, it is not expected to enter service this year. The cause is an accident with the A-frame of the 3000-tonne Liebherr crane back in October resulting in a year’s delay.
Seaway Alfa Lift is a purpose-built offshore wind turbine foundation installation vessel, which industrialises the installation process and significantly reduces the time required per unit installed. The vessel offers superior payload capacity, a mechanised deck and operating in dynamic positioning mode.
Now, with the exception of the crane, all key systems are fully commissioned, generator sets have been tested to full power, the accommodation areas are fully functional and navigation and operations bridges are operational. The original planning was for the ship to be delivered at the end of 2021 or early 2022.
Crane accident Alfa Lift
On 18 October 2021, an incident occurred with the A-frame on the 3000-tonne Liebherr crane. At the time, Seaway 7 spoke of an ‘unplanned movement’ in which no personnel was injured.
Since then, the A-frame has been removed from the vessel, inspected, and is now under repair at the yard. Crane repairs are expected to be complete during the second half of 2022. As a result of key supplier delays, the final installation, testing and commissioning of the mission equipment for the upending and lowering of monopiles is expected to represent the critical path to vessel delivery and readiness for operations.
Seaway 7 says it does not expect the vessel will be operational on projects during 2022.
Seaway Strashnov to stand in for Alfa Lift
The Alfa Lift has already been contracted for transport and installation of the foundations for the Dogger Bank A and B offshore wind projects in the UK. These projects will run from 2022 to 2024.
As the Alfa Lift will not be available this year, Seaway 7 says a contingency scenario is activated which utilises Seaway Strashnov to progress the committed work on the Dogger Bank A project in the second half of 2022.
Second newbuild project of Seaway Ventus on schedule
In addition to the Seaway Alfa Lift, Seaway 7 is also building a a specialised jack-up installation vessel of GustoMSC design, the Seaway Ventus. It is the company’s first wind turbine installation vessel (WTIV) which, due to the capacity of the crane, will also be suitable for installation of foundations. The vessel is designed to efficiently handle all current and known future designs of wind turbine generators (WTGs).
The shipbuilding contract for Seaway Ventus became effective on 30 November 2020 and is progressing towards completion of detailed design. The steel cutting milestone was achieved according to plan on 25 November 2021. Fabrication of hull blocks, crane pedestal and leg sections/jacking gears are ongoing. Delivery is on track for mid-2023, and the vessel has secured its first WTG installation contract on Borkum Riffgrund 3/Gode Wind 3 for Ørsted.
Pictures by Seaway 7.