With wind turbines and capacities continuously growing, the capacity of current foundation installation vessels may be a limiting factor in the near future. Responding to the demand for larger capacities, Vuyk Engineering Rotterdam presents the new foundation installation vessel VERticale.
The growth potential for offshore wind energy and the race towards net-zero emissions are major accelerators when it comes to the installation of renewable energy sources. Wind turbines are constantly evolving, and capacities of over 15 megawatts (MW) are likely to be no exception within just five years.
‘VERticale is developed for an optimised deck layout,’ states Kuno van den Berg, Department Manager Operational Engineering at Vuyk Engineering Rotterdam. ‘The location of the offshore crane, motion compensated gripper and position of monopiles are all finetuned for efficiency. Compared to other vessels and concepts for future foundation installation, VERticale aims for a minimum number of offshore handling operations. Not only loading and seafastening is done in a controlled port environment, also upending. This results in less motion sensitive operations offshore and therefore lower risk and increased weather window for the actual monopile installation. Thus, operating expenses (OPEX) are reduced.’
The transport layout with vertically positioned monopiles results in a relatively compact vessel of 218 x 70 metres. For monopile or jacket installation, VERticale is outfitted with a 5000-tonne offshore crane with sufficient lifting height and overturning moment capacity.
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‘The challenge was to find a balance between vessel capabilities for installing future wind turbine generator foundations, with a clear focus on capital expenditure (CAPEX) minimisation combined with the same or lower OPEX,’ explains Nicky Mayenburg, Technical Sales Manager. ‘Other solutions and concepts have been studied, but most result in larger vessel dimensions and more complex handling operations when the vessel is offshore. The VERticale setup results in a balanced solution for installing future wind farms.’
The technical specifications of VERticale are:
- Design: Vuyk Engineering Rotterdam, The Netherlands
- Length over all: 218.00 m
- Breadth moulded: 70.00 m
- Free deck area: 10,500 m2
- Crane capacity: 5000 mt @ 50 m outreach
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