Gearing up for ever larger wind turbines and with global offshore wind farm development plans surging, Rotterdam-headquartered Van Oord has placed an order with the Yantai CIMC Raffles Shipyard in China for a 175 meter long jack-up installation vessel able to transport and install wind turbines of up to 20 MW capacity and their foundations. The order includes an option for a second vessel.
Designed by Knud E. Hansen, the wind turbine installation vessel (WTIV) will be equipped with a Huisman crane enabling it to lift more than 3,000 tonnes. It will have an advanced jacking system and four 126-meter long legs, enabling it to jack up and work in water 70 meters deep.
“Thanks to our experiences with the installation vessels Aeolus, MPI Resolution and MPI Adventure, we have a good grasp of working with jack-up installation vessels,” said Arnoud Kuis, managing director offshore wind at Van Oord. “Now we are going one step further—the new ship will be the largest of its kind. Compared to the Aeolus, this new version has 88% more deck space and over 80% more lifting capacity.”
Continuing Van Oord’s commitment to decarbonization, the vessel will be able to operate on methanol, which will reduces the ship’s CO2 footprint by more than 78%. In addition, the vessel will be equipped with an advanced SCR (selective catalytic reduction) system to reduce NOx emissions. A 5,000 kWh battery pack will be installed to take peak loads and regenerate energy to further reduce fuel consumption (and corresponding emissions).
“To become carbon neutral by 2050, we look for new fuel technologies,” said Jaap de Jong, director ship management of Van Oord. “We see methanol as one of the alternatives to meet the industry’s goals to reduce its environmental impact. Similar steps have already been made in our investment program with the construction of three LNG-fueled trailing suction hopper dredges and the ordering of a new green cable-laying vessel.”
Expected to be operational in 2024, the ship will fly the Dutch flag. Van Oord says that its investment in the ship is part of a EUR 1 billion fleet investment program over the next five years and follows its December 2020 order for a new green cable-laying vessel to be built by Vard.
Since 2002, Van Oord has contributed to the installation of a cumulative renewable energy capacity of 14.5 GW. That represents 40% of the total installed capacity of approximately 35 GW of offshore wind worldwide at the end of 2020.
“This investment prepares us for the increase in scale in the offshore wind industry and allows us to maintain our leadership position,” said Pieter van Oord, CEO Van Oord.