Seawork Innovation Awards (UK)

The direct impact of the renewables industry on the commercial marine sector was evidenced by the results of the Seawork Innovation Awards.

Houlder Ltd was presented with the prestigious Seawork Spirit of Innovation Trophy at the Innovation Awards Dinner for its offshore wind Turbine Access System (TAS). The lightweight motion-compensated gangway, developed with BMT Nigel Gee, provides safe and reliable access from workboats in the offshore wind industry. It is already featured in several vessel designs. Increasing the significant wave height window for personnel transfer from 1.5m to 2.0m allows quick resets and minor turbine repairs to be undertaken on a higher proportion of North Sea work days.

On receiving the Spirit of Innovation Trophy, Rupert Hare, MD, Houlder said: “Winning the Seawork Innovations Showcase repays – in an instant – all the efforts of the Houlder team in the development of our Turbine Access System. We are a UK employee-based business and our future is looking good. We must recognise the contribution made by BMT Nigel Gee in this success.”

By closing day of Seawork, on Thursday 16th June, Mike Carter reported that, since winning the coveted Spirit of Innovation Award, Houlder had been contacted by a number of vessel constructors with prospective orders in the WSFV sector: “Our trophy success has given us a high profile entry into this expanding market and expectations of growth internationally”’ Mike concluded.

Seawork Innovations Showcase Winners

Seawork Innovations Showcase category winners were:

Vessel Design & Construction: Damen – High Speed Support Vessel 2610

Marine Civil Engineering & Construction: Wave Craft UK – Waveblade PLUS

Marine Equipment, Electronics & Materials: UNIMEC Srl – Sigmadrive

Diving & Underwater Technology: GRP Laminates, MSV Explorer

Safety & Training: EchoPilot – 2D Forward Looking Sonar

Renewable Energy Marine Supply Chain: Houlder Ltd – Turbine Access System (TAS)

Renewable Energy Onboard Generation and Conservation – KPM-Marine – EcoMast wind generator

Casper Vermeulen of Netherlands-based Damen Shipyards was delighted to win the Innovation Award in the Vessel Design & Construction category for the High Speed Support Vessel 2610: “Winning a Seawork Innovation Award will be very useful in future publicity and the exhibition has been the perfect forum in which to introduce this catamaran, which can maintain high speeds in 2m significant wave height, to the offshore wind industry. We’ve spoken to developers and turbine manufacturers among others and the feedback has been very promising. This is my 13th Seawork, and it’s been busier than ever.”


Source: seawork, June 23, 2011