State-of-the-art service vessels for offshore wind
Shipbuilders are following wind farms out to sea. Ulstein delivers pioneering vessels to some of Europe’s most exciting offshore wind projects.
Wind farms are moving offshore. The wind is more reliable at sea than over land, and ocean-based turbines intrude less on local communities.
According to Wind Europe, there are 110 offshore wind farms in 12 European countries as of the end of 2019. Accompanying these is a growing demand for vessels to service large-scale wind farms.
Pioneering service operation vessels for offshore wind farms
Ulstein specialises in service operation vessels (SOVs) for offshore wind farms. The vessels are purpose-built and equipped with gangways allowing offshore service personnel to walk to work, from shore to ship to wind turbine. Because they serve as a floating hotel for weeks at time, the SOVs offer a high level of comfort.
One of its recent newbuilds, Windea Jules Verne, was delivered from Ulstein Verft in 2020 and has started her first assignments. The vessel features Ulstein’s patented X-BOW® and X-STERN™ hull line designs for improved operability and comfort, reduced resistance in head seas, and thus, reduced fuel consumption and emissions.
In addition to walk-to-work SOVs, Ulstein offers other ship designs for offshore wind, including cable-laying and pipe-laying ships, jack-up vessels, heavy installation crane vessels and rock dumping vessels.
According to Navigant Research, the global capacity of offshore wind farms is almost 17 GW, with 7.9 GW on its way to being installed. Zion Market Research forecasts the industry to grow by an average of 16.2 per cent every year until 2022, increasing the demand for high-quality service vessels.
Ulstein Group is a large group of shipbuilding, ship design and supporting companies. Founded in 1917, it is one of Norway’s largest shipbuilders and has been active in the offshore wind market for well over a decade.