January 24 - SAL Offshore - the offshore installation arm of SAL Heavy Lift - has successfully installed a VOITH Hytide 1000-13 tidal turbine, offshore the Orkney Islands in Scotland.

SAL Offshore used the DP Class II vessel Lone to complete the project.

Lone proceeded directly from her previous job, a parbuckling project for the sunken Costa Concordia in Italy, to Stavanger in Norway to collect remote operated vehicles (ROV) and project equipment. Lone then sailed to Kirkwall, Orkney Islands to load a launch and recovery system (LARS) turbine.

After conducting a hazard identification and risk assessment (HIRA), and a function test of the equipment, Lone set sail for the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) test site to perform DP trails and install the turbine.

The installation process required Lone to lift the tidal turbine from a transportation cradle on a barge before positioning it on pre-installed foundations. Once installed the turbine blades sat at 14 m below sea level.

SAL Offshore explained that installing the turbine at such a depth was very demanding for the vessel's DP system due to strong currents. SAL identified that there was only one time slot every six hours to safely perform the installation, during slack water. Even then, Lone had to negotiate a 1 knot tide during installation. The ROV equipment was used to monitor the process underwater, and to hook-up control components.