MacGregor and Kongsberg Maritime Launch Pile-Gripper Solution

MacGregor and Kongsberg Maritime have unveiled a new monopile installation solution which is said to eliminate the need for temporary mooring during the installation process.

Image source: MacGregor

The new pile-gripper solution, now ready for the market, applies motion-compensation technology, coupled with dynamic positioning (DP), to the monopile installation process, MacGregor said.

“We have developed a core solution that tackles the efficiency of turbine and foundation installation vessels by replacing lengthy, temporary mooring processes with full DP in combination with an innovative guidance system and hydraulic frame mechanism,” said Gunnar Thorsen, Executive Vice President Business Development, Kongsberg Maritime.

The new pile-gripper solution consists of a motion-compensated, hydraulically-operated pile-gripper and a pile-gripper guidance control system which works in tandem with the DP system and provides a coordination link between the pile-gripper and the DP system.

A pile-gripper servo control system translates vessel motion and monopile position data to movement in the actuating cylinders. It also monitors loads and the status of the pile for feedback into the guidance system.

If there is a loss of position, the solution’s abandon monopile capability guides a monopile into the last possible position, after which the gripper is opened for abandoning the pile.

“Our newly-developed pile installation method represents a considerable improvement over traditional methods,” Kristina Arutjunova, Director Sales and Marketing Innovations, Advanced Offshore Solutions, MacGregor, said.

“Piles can be installed in a wider range of sea states and operators are not longer constrained by waiting for ideal weather windows.”