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Mayflower Wind signs agreement for hybrid electric CTV

Mayflower WindMayflower Wind, the developer of a deep water offshore wind project signed an agreement with Gladding-Hearn Shipbuilding/Duclos Corporation of Somerset (MA, US),  for the specification, design, and manufacture of a Jones Act-compliant, hybrid battery diesel electric crew transfer vessel.

The design of this CTV utilises technologies that will provide significant fuel savings and emissions reductions, including the use of Lithium-Ion battery energy storage to create a hybrid vessel that will be a bridge to full electrification. The multi-party agreement includes other maritime industry-leading collaborators from across the globe including Incat Crowther (Australia/UK/Lafayette, LA), BAR Technologies (UK), Corvus Energy (Norway), and ABS (Spring, TX, US) and will proceed if Mayflower is awarded a contract under the latest Massachusetts procurement for offshore wind.

“Mayflower Wind aims to develop the most innovative, fuel-efficient CTV built in the US”, says Michael Brown, CEO of Mayflower Wind. “Ensuring that this vessel is constructed at a shipyard in Somerset is a big boost to the Massachusetts maritime economy and launches this shipyard toward a new and growing market.” Gladding-Hearn is a leading small shipbuilder that in its 66-year history has constructed more than 430 vessels including those used for ferry service in New York, Boston Harbor and to Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket, and Block Island. Gladding-Hearn is also the nation’s leading builder of offshore pilot boats, which transfer harbour pilots to and from ships in extreme conditions. Peter Duclos, President of Gladding-Hearn says this project has the potential to create new jobs at his company over the next 24-36 months. “We are excited about the possibility of working with Mayflower Wind”, he states. “They want to raise the bar of CTV design and have assembled an experienced team to do just that.”

Mr Duclos notes that his firm has seen the promise of the offshore wind market over the past ten plus years and that the timing of this opportunity is perfect given the pandemic’s negative effect on the new vessel construction market. “With our location and experienced team at Gladding-Hearn, we are ready to serve the offshore wind market. We’ve been working to make it happen since the early days of Cape Wind. We’re glad to finally see it come to fruition with Mayflower Wind”, Mr Duclos adds. Mr Brown notes that by encouraging local shipyards such as Gladding-Hearn to establish themselves as ship builders for the offshore wind industry, Mayflower Wind is working to foster a local maritime supply chain. He emphasises, “This is not just an agreement with a local shipyard – it is integration of that shipyard into a collaboration with the most sophisticated and capable technology providers and designers in the world, moving this key local supplier to the forefront of its industry and setting them in a position to compete successfully on the global stage.”

The other partners in the project each bring knowledge, industry experience, and technologies to create what will be an industry-leading low emissions vessel design capable of operating in challenging weather and ocean conditions like those found offshore New England. Incat Crowther is the designer of the vessel, which will be based upon one of its industry leading CTVs already in service in Europe and customised to suit local requirements. ABS is onboard to provide design review for Approval In Principle, verification of applicable Rules, standards and US Coast Guard Regulations, and Classification of the CTV. BAR Technologies brings its Foil Optimised Stability System for fuel savings and reduced vertical accelerations for improved safety and comfort, as well as its advanced Computational Fluid Dynamics modelling and simulation that can optimise the hull and foils to reduce the drag and increase fuel efficiency. Corvus is supplier of its innovative and proven onboard battery energy storage solution to enable efficient lower emissions operations.

Speaking on the collaboration, John Cooper, CEO of BAR Technologies, voices, “BAR firmly believes in collaboration as the way forward in establishing and improving vessels, technologies, and expertise in offshore wind. We are delighted to be working with Mayflower Wind and Gladding-Hearn as leaders in the US market, to both support them in building out a successful offshore wind support sector and drive the further development of BAR’s energy efficient vessel technologies.” Greg Lennon, American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) Vice President, Global Offshore Wind states, “ABS, headquartered in the US, is pleased to partner with this team and provide our US regulatory insight to support Shell New Energies and Ocean Winds, as we all advance the US offshore wind supply chain. We are excited to help develop this advanced hybrid concept while keeping the focus on safety through the design review and eventual classification of the vessel. This Jones Act-compliant CTV concept is the latest evidence of ABS’ commitment to supporting delivery of local content.” Ronald Hansen, SVP Ship Solutions of Corvus Energy, says that Corvus Energy Storage Solutions are ideally suited for crew transfer vessels as they are very adaptable to meet this innovative CTV design criteria. “Corvus ESS have multiple possibilities of installation which ensures the optimal hybrid solution for maximum emission savings”, he explains. “Moreover, batteries are safer and quieter for the crew, and save both fuel and maintenance costs for the owners.”

Design of the vessel would occur during 2022-2023, setting the stage for building and launching the hybrid CTV in the mid 2020’s, timing that would fit well with the start of operation of wind turbines by Mayflower Wind.