Bourbon installs semi-submersible wind turbine

bourbonwindmicroParis-headquartered offshore services giant Bourbon has just installed an innovative offshore wind structure in the Atlantic, off the coast of Portugal at Aguçadoura.

The installation involved a semi-submersible wind turbine with a WindFloat foundation, a project led by the Portuguese utility EDP and designed by the U.S. technology developer Principle Power. This innovative technology enables the wind turbine to be assembled onshore with standard turbines, and then towed and anchored at a sufficient distance so as not to be visible from the coast.

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"The high level of Bourbon employees' expertise allowed for the successful deployment of each step of the project : engineering and management, mooring system installation and pre-tensioning, WindFloat towing and on-site mooring, subsea installation and power connection," explains Eric Verrière, Managing Director of Bourbon Offshore Surf, Bourbon's French subsidiary.

These operations were performed by Bourbon Liberty 228, an Anchor Handling Tug Supply vessel (AHTS) from the Bourbon fleet.

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"As of June 2010, Bourbon has been operating in offshore wind with the Bourbon Enterprise" says Patrick Belenfant, Senior Vice-President Business Management, Bourbon Subsea Services. "This IMR vessel (dedicated to Inspection, Maintenance and Repair of subsea infrastructures) first intervened on the Greater Gabbard Wind Farm, one of the biggest offshore installation projects off the South-East coast of England, before joining the BARD Offshore 1 field off Germany and ensuring operations until October 2011."

Bourbon says that the success of the Principle Power project demonstrates its capacity to offer a comprehensive range of services to the offshore wind industry at every stage of the operations:

in the exploration stage, through the Bourbon fleet of subsea exploration robots (light survey ROVs);
during the construction stage, using various vessels from the full range of Bourbon's fleet: IMR vessels for laying, connecting and burying cables on the seabed; AHTS, for towing the turbine; and crewboats for the transport of personnel;
in the maintenance stage, with IMR vessels; the accommodation capacity on these vessels also enables them to operate as a "flotel" for the region.

Christian Lefèvre, Chief Executive Officer of Bourbon says:"Bourbon has been actively involved in work on several wind farms since 2010, and a number of other projects are due to be rolled out over the next 5 years. Bourbon's fleet is ideally suited to providing solutions for the installation and operation of wind farms. Wind is a promising complementary activity for our offshore oil and gas marine service offering."


December 1, 2011

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