Major crane upgrade for offshore installation vessel Aeolus
Van Oord’s offshore installation vessel Aeolus will get a major crane upgrade. By installing a new, longer boom on Aeolus’ existing crane, the vessel will be ready to handle the newest generation up to 15MW turbines for offshore wind projects. Van Oord decided to upgrade the Aeolus to ensure that the vessel remains competitive in a rapidly changing market and, in particular, the increase in turbines sizes.
The new 133m long boom is being designed and built by Huisman. The Aeolus will be fit for duty with the new boom as from early 2023. The vessel will then be capable of installing the new generation 12-15MW turbines while maintaining its lifting capacity of 1,600t for foundation installations. The modification plan of the Aeolus fits in the strategy of Van Oord which is aimed to continuously invest in state-of-the-art sustainable technology. To keep delivering innovative solutions to the rapidly growing offshore wind industry, Van Oord also invested in a new offshore installation vessel, Boreas and a cable-laying vessel, Calypso.
Boreas is currently being built in China and can operate on methanol and install wind turbines capable of up to 20MW with a low carbon footprint. The vessel will be 175m long and can lift more than 3,000t. In August the steel cutting ceremony was performed, and construction is running on schedule. Boreas is expected to enter the market in 2024. Calypso will be operational next year. This new DP2 vessel will be equipped with a below-deck cable carousel and a second carousel on deck, with total cable-carrying capacity of 8,000t. Apart from the ability to run on biofuel, this hybrid vessel has future-fuel ready engines with built-in flexibility to anticipate e-fuels. It will have a large battery pack, a shore supply connection and a state-of-the-art energy management system.