New jack-up vessel concept for 10 to 12 MW turbines

08.02.2017
A preview of the new SOUL jack-up vessel concept has been presented to a select group of industry players. (Graphic: Ulstein)
A preview of the new SOUL jack-up vessel concept has been presented to a select group of industry players. (Graphic: Ulstein)

SeaOwls and Ulstein launched a pioneering heavy lift jack-up vessel design, the SOUL, allowing transport and installation of the next generation wind turbines with a capacity of 10 to 12 MW. The cruciform structural lay-out of the SOUL jack-up vessel makes the patent-pending solution more than 10 % lighter than conventional jack-up vessel designs. In combination with a high capacity crane, SOUL enables operators to install the next generation wind turbines with 10 to 12 MW in the same time frame as currently used for installing 6 to 8 MW units.

The SOUL series will come in various sizes, allowing the transport of 3 up to 6 of the 10 to 12 MW wind turbines. Still, all loading and installation operations can be performed without the need of ballast water.

“The development of this novel jack-up vessel is the logical next step in our strategy to widen our portfolio and become a leading company in supporting the offshore wind industry with more efficient assets”, says Tore Ulstein, Deputy CEO at Ulstein Group.

Scaling-up conventional heavy lift jack-up vessel designs proves challenging due to the disproportional weight increase compared to gain in Variable Deck Load (VDL).

“We noticed this created uncertainty with turbine manufacturers, wind farm operators and installation contractors on how to install the future generation wind turbines, as floating vessels are not a viable alternative”, comments Erik Snijders, Founder and Managing director at Rotterdam based SeaOwls, and continues: “So we went back to the optimal jack-up design, a square platform with the legs spaced out as much as possible. Rotating the platform by 45o provided a natural bow shape with two legs and the crane on vessel centre line.”

“This seemingly simple twist in the design allowed to make a huge improvement in operational aspects as well,” adds Bram Lambregts, Deputy Managing Director at Ulstein Design & Solutions BV. “With the main crane around the stern leg, optimal main deck reach and over-the-side lifting capabilities is created. And as the hull now houses much larger leg footings, bearing pressures on the seabed are reduced, while the wake of the spud cans does not interfere with the inflow to the propulsion thrusters.”

Silke Funke / Ulstein / SeaOwls

Similar Entries

Siemens Gamesa wind farm in Brazil (pict. Siemens Gamesa)

• Siemens Gamesa will supply global utility AES with 52 units of the industry leading SG 5.8-170, boasting the largest rotor in the segment. The turbines will operate at up to 6.2 MW.

(pict. SH Group A/S)

New easy-to-maneuver transportation solution enables safe, easy and secure transportation of large wind blades on rough and uneven surfaces.

Renewables covered around 52 percent of gross power consumed in Germany during the first quarter of 2020. This all-time high was driven by a combination of one-off events. Preliminary calculations by the Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Württemberg (ZSW) and the German Federal Association of Energy and Water Management (BDEW) yielded this figure. February’s record winds were followed by an unusually sunny March. Power consumption was also down by one percent from the same period last year.

Following the acquisition of Ria Blades, Siemens Gamesa has completed the purchase of selected assets from Senvion announced in October 2019. The acquisition of Onshore Service assets and IP was concluded in January 2020.