Ulstein Design & Solutions has revealed its HX118 heavy lift vessel design for offshore wind foundation installation.
Based off the SOC 5000 design, of which several vessels are currently in operation or under construction, including Heerema’s Aegir and Subsea 7’s Seven Borealis, the concept has been developed to handle the next generation of foundations, monopiles and jackets. It features a 5,000-tonne capacity main crane.
Ko Stroo, lead naval architect/product manager in Ulstein Design & Solutions, said: “We worked four years on the development of this design, using our unique ‘Ulstein blended design‘ methodology, CFD simulations, and knowledge gained from the Alfa Lift design and Aegir conversion. Combining our vast track record in heavy lift vessels with business case analysis and latest installation technologies resulted in what basically is the Mk3 version of our SOC 5000 design.”
Managing director Edwin van Leeuwen added: “Moreover, we have already received favourable pricings on this HLV design from multiple yards worldwide. So, all ingredients are available to the industry to push the button, get into a yard contract and get delivery in 2025.”
The company noted the shortage of specialised heavy lift vessels to install the increasing number of larger, next generation wind turbines, commenting that this jeopardises the offshore wind farm realisations. “The timely realisation of offshore wind farms that are currently in the pipeline is in jeopardy after 2025, as multiple market analysts project a shortage of specialised heavy lift vessels needed to install the increasing number of larger, next-generation wind turbines,” the company said. It hopes that this off-the-shelf design can help fill that gap.