July 31 - Swire Pacific Offshore Operations (Pte) (SPO), the parent company of Swire Blue Ocean A/S, has taken delivery of Pacific Orca, which it claims is the world's largest windfarm installation vessel, from Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI). The vessel w

The vessel's particulars include a length of 161 m, a breadth of 49 m and a draught of 10.4 m. She will be the world's largest structure for installing wind turbine generators, with a capacity to carry and install up to 12 units of a 3.6 MW design. Pacific Orca can install offshore wind foundations and generators in ocean depths of up to 60 m, and her design will enable the installation of the ultra-large generators of 10 MW or more that are currently being developed to meet the future needs of the industry.

By fixing her six jack-up legs to the seabed and lifting herself up to 17 m above the surface of the ocean, Pacific Orca can conduct offshore windfarm installation in a manner least affected by wind and waves, and with maximum accuracy and promptness, says the owner.

Swire Pacific Offshore's managing director, Neil Glenn, said: "The delivery of Pacific Orca is an important milestone for the industry. With more than 30 years of offshore experience and a strong commitment to safety, Swire comes to the market confident that they, through Copenhagen-based Swire Blue Ocean, will deliver the high quality product, performance and service levels that offshore wind customers are looking for."

The demand for offshore windfarm installation vessels similar to Pacific Orca is expected to increase in line with rapid growth of the marine wind power market, which industry experts predict will grow from 3.55 GW in 2012 to 239 GW in 2030, prompted by the global push for renewable energy generation.

Swire Pacific Offshore has another windfarm installation vessel on order with Samsung Heavy Industries. ThePacific Osprey is scheduled for delivery at the end of this year and is planned to be deployed for the Dan Tysk project.