Ulstein to design first Jones Act compliant offshore wind SOV

Written by Nick Blenkey
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Walk-to-work SOV will be based on Ulstein's SX195 design

OCTOBER 17, 2018 — Orlando, FL, headquartered Aeolus Energy Group (AEG), a market leader in onshore wind turbine maintenance and repair, announced its expansion into the developing U.S. offshore wind market back in April with an aggressive plan to build a Jones Act compliant fleet of installation, maintenance and crew transfer vessels.

It has now followed through by inking an agreement with Ulstein Design & Solutions, B.V. to design a Service Operations Vessel (SOV) that, when constructed, will serve as the initial Aeolus investment into a fleet of vessels including cable ships, crew transfer vessels and hotel ships, all designed to service the offshore wind industry from installation through decommissioning.

“The design and ultimate construction of these vessels will result in significant job creation and is a demonstration of confidence in the American shipbuilding industry,” said Elia Golfin, CEO of Aeolus Energy Inc. “We are excited to be working with Ulstein, an established market leader in vessel design for offshore wind. We look forward to pushing the envelope in the offshore wind industry where Jones Act-compliant vessels are concerned.”

Ulstein says the project will start with customizing its SX195 design to optimize the new walk-to-work vessel for operations in U.S. offshore wind farms featuring the X-Bow and X-Stern hull shape.

“Offshore wind is one of our core markets, and we are extremely proud to have been selected as design partner by Aeolus for developing the United States’ first purpose built SOV vessel,” says Tore Ulstein, deputy CEO of Ulstein. “With our track record in SOV and offshore vessel designs, we are committed and do look forward to supporting Aeolus in realizing their offshore wind ambitions and develop their fleet portfolio. Using also our experiences in supporting shipyards worldwide to construct our innovative offshore vessel designs, it is with great enthusiasm that we now start on this exciting journey in the United States.”

The contract is Ulstein’s fifth in the offshore wind sector this year, the previous contracts being two SOVs, a cable lay vessel and a large foundation installation vessel.

“We expect to create over 4,000 jobs in the coming years. AEG sees this investment as our demonstration of confidence in the U,S market,” said Golfin, CEO of Aeolus Energy Group. “The untapped potential of offshore wind energy in U.S. coastal waters is well documented. The initial projects are well into their development – what is lacking is a U.S. construction fleet, trained American workers, and port facilities to do the work. That is what we intend to create.”

SOV will be first vessel in an Aeolus Jones Act fleet designed to service the offshore wind industry from installation through decommissioning 

aeolus fleet

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