Technip Invests in ‘Next Generation’ of Renewables Subsea Technology (France)

Technip Invests in ‘Next Generation’ of Renewables Subsea Technology

Technip Offshore Wind Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Technip, has reinforced its next generation subsea technology, underpinning its ambitious vision to drive the renewables industry to a new frontier.

Technip has harnessed its internationally proven deep-rooted energy sector expertise to breed a new pedigree of cable plough and trencher that feature cutting-edge design and frontline capabilities focused on the needs of the offshore renewable market.

Working closely with the market leader in trenching and ploughing technology to develop innovative and practical applications, Technip’s pioneering trencher is believed to be an industry first.

The technology has the ability to automatically switch between trenching modes to suit changing soil conditions, from high pressure jetting to low pressure fluidisation, educting and mechanical cutting without the requirement to recover the unit and reconfigure systems. The sophisticated power control and distribution system allows any or all of the individual systems to be deployed individually or in combinations to achieve maximum effect, while its sophisticated telemetary surveillance suite enables the operator to monitor the cable at all times and in low visibility prior to and immediately after burial.

In addition, the trencher has advanced technical functions that allow it to operate in a diverse range of environmental and soil conditions without recovery or redeployment. The mechanical chain cutter is designed to penetrate through 40mpa of rock and 1,000kpa of clay.

Technip’s SMART plough also takes subsea cabling in renewables to a new game-changing level with its remote self-loading and unloading subsea capability enabling cables to be both safely and effectively deployed in water depths up to 1,000msw.

Technip has further capitalised on its industry know-how by adding additional technical features, including a 250kW water jetting system into the plough share with variable nozzle technology which enhances the plough’s capabilities and reduces tow forces by an estimated 25%, resulting in faster burial speeds and lower vessel fuel costs.

Both the trencher and plough technologies have been specially designed on behalf of Technip Offshore Wind Limited by UK company SMD (Soil Machine Dynamics), a global-leading manufacturer of remote intervention technology with a well-established track record in subsea engineering dating back to the 1970s.

Geoff Fisher, vice president of the Cables Division at Aberdeen-headquartered Technip Offshore Wind Limited, which is exhibiting at the EWEA Offshore conference in Amsterdam this week (November 29 to December 1), said: “With the renewables’ landscape continuing to fast evolve, it is vital that we grow and enhance our capabilities to capitalise on the opportunities as well as deliver solutions to overcome the challenges.

 “Technip Offshore Wind Limited recognises that leading-edge technology adds significant tangible value which is why we have invested significantly in our customised trencher and plough – assets which are in high industry demand.

 “Through our hub of engineering excellence in Aberdeen, we have specially developed these technologies by applying Technip’s international energy expertise and experience. We have used British-manufactured subsea technology which builds in Technip’s track record in engineering, construction, offshore operations and innovation including crucial, industry-recognised technical safeguards.

 “As a result, we believe these technologies will mirror Technip’s reputation as a world-leading energy player by differentiating us in the marketplace as well as underline our strong commitment to development of renewable energies.”

The trencher and plough are to undergo rigorous field trials by Technip for assured delivery and it is anticipated that they will be brought to the market by mid-2012.


Offshore WIND staff, November 29, 2011; Image: technip