UK: OMM Develops New Met Mast Concept
Offshore Marine Management (OMM) has developed a new meteorological mast (‘met mast’) concept which can reduce costs for offshore wind developers and have a lesser impact on the environment.
The new met mast design by OMM removes the need for specific front end engineering as a number of different variations have been created in ‘sections’ which means that the design can be adapted for the requirements of each site. This design also allows the mast to be refitted after decommissioning allowing it to be used up to a further four times – significantly reducing operator costs. The concept also eliminates the requirement for the base of the mast to be drilled into the seabed, potentially leading to less disruption to the marine environment.
OMM can construct the met mast at the project site port, float it out to the location offshore and then lower it onto the seabed utilising existing gravity base technology and innovative design to this base. Rather than using an expensive specialist jack-up barge, a readily-available and far more cost effective multi-use flatback DP2 vessel can be used.
Rob Grimmond, Managing Director at Offshore Marine Management (OMM) said, “At OMM we believe that the met mast process can be improved, saving operators significant sums of money. We have considered every point at which money is spent in deploying a met mast and looked at how we can reduce these costs while also simplifying the process – in short we wanted to minimise the impact of installation. We believe the continual development of new techniques, such as this new met mast, are the key to ensuring that the offshore industry continues to move forward.”
At the moment OMM’s design is in the testing phase but there are already early indications it will save up to 40% on the overall process of installing, maintaining and decommissioning met masts.
Offshore WIND Staff, March 20, 2012