Damen Shipyards Group has designed a new Fast Crew Supplier (FCS) 3410 service accommodation and transfer vessel (SATV) with features that are said to ensure its suitability for operations in the developing offshore wind market in North America.
The premise of the design is the Damen Twin Axe bow design which allows the vessel to cut through waves instead of slamming, improving seakeeping and onboard comfort, the company said. Damen’s FCS 2610 optimised this seakeeping behaviour by combining the Axe Bow with a catamaran hull form.
Damen has recently developed this theme further with the FCS 2710 – a new FCS vessel one metre longer than its predecessor and, with an additional metre in water clearance, enabling the vessel extended operational windows.
The FCS 3410 is said to further develop this theme, tailoring the concept to meet the requirements of the emerging US offshore renewables market.
“This vessel is well suited to numerous markets, however, we have given it long endurance capability so that it can remain at sea for up to five days at a time – a requirement typically seen in US operations. To facilitate this we have designed a vessel 6 metres longer than previous FCS types, able to host more on board personnel and accommodation,” Daan Dijxhoorn, Damen sales manager US, said.
The FCS 3410 also draws on the Damen Accommodation Support Vessel 9020, a walk-to-work vessel designed for transporting and providing accommodation for offshore personnel for up to a month.
The FCS 3410 would be built on location in the United States. The company's US partner yards have built Damen designs at domestic locations for years, providing American ship owners with access to Damen’s designs while complying with the requirements of the Jones Act. This process, the Damen Technical Cooperation, ranges from licensing up to the delivery of full materials package, including technical support.
''There’s a real sense that offshore wind is building momentum. The Black Island Wind Farm off Rhode Island is still the only wind farm in operation off the coast of the USA nearly two years after it opened, but a number of states are pushing ahead with their own plans for offshore renewable energy development,” Dijxhoorn said.
Massachusetts currently leads the way in these developments with a target of 1,600MW generated by wind energy by 2027 and having an 800 MW project planned to begin next year. New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Maryland also have plans in the pipeline.