Van Oord orders mega installation vessel
Since 2002, Van Oord has contributed to the installation of a cumulative renewable energy capacity of 14.5GW. That represents 40% of the total installed capacity of approximately 35GW of offshore wind worldwide at the end of 2020. The demand for offshore wind farms remains high and wind turbines at sea are also rapidly getting bigger. In 2002 there were wind turbines of 2MW, nowadays turbines of 14MW are installed. The rotor blades are already well over a 100m long and the transport and installation requires larger ships. Van Oord is now investing in a new vessel to transport and install the next generation of 20MW wind turbines. “This investment prepares us for the increase in scale in the offshore wind industry and allows us to maintain our leadership position”, Pieter van Oord, CEO of Van Oord says.
The new 17m offshore installation vessel will be purpose-built for the transport and installation of foundations and turbines at offshore wind farms. With a crane supplied by the Dutch company Huisman, it can lift more than 3,000t. The vessel has an advanced jacking system. Four giant legs, each measuring 126m, allow the vessel to be jacked up and work in waters up to 70m deep. This investment is part of a EUR 1 billion fleet investment programme over the next five years. In December 2020, Van Oord had already ordered a new green cable-laying vessel at VARD in Norway.
Van Oord is committed to reducing CO2 emissions and to becoming carbon-neutral by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement. This investment is an example of the energy transition within the company as new installation vessel will be able to run on the future fuel methanol. 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 to an absolute minimum. An installed 5,000kWh 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. The ship is expected to enter the market in 2024 and will work under the Dutch flag. Van Oord has also taken an option on a second vessel.