All Coast, a provider of liftboats to the U.S. oil and gas industry, has announced that it will add a new vessel to its fleet with which it will enter the U.S. offshore wind market. The vessel will be used for installation and maintenance of offshore wind farms.
The company has partnered with A. K. Suda for the optimisation of the vessel design, based on the SUDA model JG6000P, an optimised design of a special-purpose liftboat that can carry up to four 8MW complete wind turbines and with sufficient crane capacity to install them. Its design has been optimised by A. K. Suda to work within the restrictions presented at different staging ports in the U.S.
SEMCO, a Louisiana-based shipyard, is in charge of building the vessel.
The vessel will be Jones Act-compliant: U.S. built, owned, flagged and operated. To be workable, it had to be competitive in cost, A. K. Suda stated, adding that this vessel is comparable in cost to build in the U.S. compared to existing vessels built in, for example, the Far East.
Ajay Suda, Managing Director, said: “We have priced the vessel in the U.S. and in the Far East. Based on information available, we are confident that it is cheaper to build in the U.S. rather than (say) in the Far East .”
John Powers of All Coast said: “The vessel has to be special-purpose, and efficiently designed, built, and operated to have any success in this business.”
“Barges on legs don’t make WTIVs. We are happy to team up with SUDA for this challenging project,” Powers added.
“Siemens Gamesa is confident in the development of offshore wind, and the U.S. is a focus market for us as we expand outside of developed markets in Europe. A U.S. flagged installation and maintenance vessel helps to establish a sustainable offshore industry in our country,” A. K. Suda cited Jason Folsom, Head of Sales Offshore Americas at Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, in its press release.