Jack Up Barge Supports World’s First Combined Grid Solution
Jack Up Barge (JUB) has successfully completed a support and supply contract for the hook-up and commissioning of two offshore platforms at the Danish Kriegers Flak offshore windfarm. For this project JUB mobilised its 55.5m long self-elevating jack-up vessel JB-115, marking the company’s first contract with clients Energinet and 50Hertz, the respective national grid operators in Denmark and Germany.
The project involved several phases. The first is an AC Substation that will transfer power from the 600MW capacity Kriegers Flak windfarm onshore. The second platform is part of the so-called Combined Grid Solution (CGS), a joint project between Energinet and 50Hertz. Due to Krieger Flak’s close proximity to the German offshore windfarm Baltic 2, Energinet and 50Hertz intend to connect both windfarms with two submarine cables. Representing the first time that the national power grids of two different countries have been connected, CGS will allow producers and consumers to combine and exchange power.
JUB won the contract after an EU-compliant tender. A process that immediately established a trusting relationship between the companies. “JUB’s modular accommodation solution and the decisive organisation enabled us to offer the fast mobilisation time that they required. We take pride in the fact that we deployed the JB-115 to the work site just five days after contract signing,” says JUB’s Rig Manager Leander van den Berge. “A big compliment goes to our offshore team whose craftsmanship guaranteed this service delivery commitment.”
JUB carried out modifications to two key aspects of the JB-115 in order to make it ‘project-ready’. This involved the installation of a second access gangway to provide personnel access to the nearest topside. Additional accommodation modules with twin-bed cabins, complete with own bathroom, Wi-Fi, TV and effective sound insulation were also installed meeting Danish standards. Other notable features of the JB-115 that came into play during the project were the 300t crane and the 1,000m2 of deck space for client supplies and equipment. The vessel’s offshore certified helideck was also used by the client to transfer personnel to the second, more distant platform.
This is where the flexibility of Jack-Up Barge’s service can be seen. “We can provide the best match to the client’s requirements,” continues Mr Van den Berge. “Our fleet is versatile enough to offer different configurations of accommodation or deck space. And with this project, offering the client various methods of crew transfer; using our gangway to the nearby platform or a crew transfer vessel or helicopter to the other topside.” While JUB has supported numerous European offshore wind-related projects in recent years, the fact that CGS is a world’s first is of particular significance, adds Mr Van den Berge, “We are absolutely proud to have been able to contribute to such a ground-breaking project.”