An offshore personnel transfer company, Reflex Marine, is developing a new personnel access concept for the offshore wind and traditional energy industries, the SEA-SPIDER.
The innovation will utilise winch based access to offer an alternative to current access methods, such as butting a vessel against the turbine structures and crews stepping onto a ladder.
The company said it has already received strong interest for SEA-SPIDER from operators in Europe. CEO, Philip Strong commented: “It is essential that we continue to develop flexible and weather capable transfer solutions to meet the challenges of further offshore wind farm developments. We feel strongly that close collaboration with vessel designers, vessel operators and lifting specialists will allow us to develop improved practices, not only in the wind energy sector but wherever offshore personnel transfers are needed.
“It’s an exciting time for us as we continue to innovate and SEA-SPIDER follows the unveiling of our completed FROG-XT range for the first time at Offshore Europe 2015, designed for offshore operations, extreme performance and safety.”
Winch based access will enable operators to use much of the current fleet and equipment already in the field. In the absence of a dedicated crane on the installation, a bespoke hoisting system can be retrofitted which allows the personnel transfer capsule to be safely hoisted, the company explained.
At the core of the system is a FROG-XT1, a single person transfer device. The FROG-XT1 will form part of the FROG-XT product range. Options to transfer maintenance teams in groups can also be achieved using higher capacity Reflex Marine capsules.
The SEA-SPIDER aims to eliminate the major risks associated with personnel transfer. The company said it is determined to help raise safety standards by providing additional safe solutions for maintenance access to offshore wind farms.