Van Oord orders new 'mega ship' for 20 MW turbines

4C Offshore | Tom Russell
By: 01/10/2021 Van Oord

Van Oord has ordered a new jack-up installation vessel, which can operate on methanol and install up to 20 MW wind turbines. The ship is expected to enter the market in 2024.

The new 175-metre offshore installation vessel will be purpose-built for the transport and installation of foundations and turbines at offshore wind farms. It is to be equipped with a crane supplied by the Dutch company Huisman which is designed to lift more than 3,000 tonnes. The vessel has a jacking system with four giant legs, each measuring 126 metres, which will allow the vessel to be jacked up and work in waters up to 70 metres deep.

The new installation vessel will be able to run on methanol. According to Van Oord, running on methanol reduces the ship's CO2 footprint by more than 78%. In addition, the vessel will be equipped with an advanced active emissions control technology (Selective Catalytic Reduction) to reduce the NOx emission. An installed 5,000 kWh battery pack can take the peak loads and regenerate energy to reduce the fuel consumption (and corresponding emissions) even further.

The vessel is being built by the Yantai CIMC Raffles Shipyard in China. The design is by Knud E Hansen. Components such as the Huisman crane and other technical systems are delivered to the yard by the various suppliers and integrated on site.

Van Oord has also taken an option on a second vessel.

"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.

"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. 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,"
commented Arnoud Kuis, Managing Director, Offshore Wind, Van Oord.

"To become carbon neutral by 2050, we look for new fuel technologies. 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 programme with the construction of three LNG-fuelled trailing suction hopper dredgers and the ordering of a new green cable-laying vessel,"
said Jaap de Jong, Director, Ship Management, Van Oord.

The new vessel investment is part of a EUR 1 billion fleet investment programme over the next 5 years. In December 2020, Van Oord ordered a new green cable-laying vessel at VARD in Norway.

For more information on installation and maintenance of major offshore wind farm components, click here.