Fred. Olsen 1848, Huisman Introduce Novel Solution for Major Component Exchange on Floating Wind Farms

Fred. Olsen 1848 and Huisman have developed a new concept for major component exchange on floating offshore wind farms and aim to bring the solution into operation before the end of this decade.

Fred. Olsen 1848
Fred. Olsen 1848

The Floating Maintenance Solution enables major component exchange at a wind farm’s offshore site, with no need to disconnect the foundation and tow the turbine to a port.

The crane, whose in-field deployment can be performed by a regular offshore support vessel, is positioned on the floating structure and operates with the same motions as the floating foundation.

The solution removes the need for dynamic lifts and is compatible with most semi-submerged floating structures, with no modifications needed on the tower or the wind turbine and with minimal modifications to the floating foundation, according to the two companies.

The partners, which have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU), are now moving the Floating Maintenance Solution into a new phase where the next milestone is to conclude a detailed project FEED study.

The complete solution and operational procedure was developed by Fred. Olsen 1848, which says it drew on the competencies of the Fred. Olsen-related companies.

“We have worked to solve the maintenance challenge in floating wind by building on the decade-long experience with O&M operations from our sister-companies Fred. Olsen Windcarrier and Global Wind Service”, said Sofie Olsen Jebsen, CEO Fred. Olsen 1848.

“The present floating wind component exchange solutions are too costly in terms of assets required, downtime of the turbine and available weather windows. We believe the Floating Maintenance Solution will be a game-changer in the market and can enable the industrialisation of floating offshore wind”.

After developing the concept, the company teamed up with the crane specialist Huisman to develop a crane for such operation.

Huisman then engineered and developed an all-electric drive system with an expandable main boom and a foldable knuckle boom integrated in a compact self-supporting setup, to enable safe and efficient transport.

The solution comes with a unique quick connection system, allowing the crane to be deployed in multiple
lightweight modules, and such that it can be quickly deployed on any floating foundation prepared for this setup, according to Fred. Olsen 1848, which further added that the Floating Maintenance Solution already attracted interest of several large floating offshore wind developers.

The introduction of the Floating Maintenance Solution was hinted earlier this year, when Fred. Olsen 1848 launched a new floating offshore wind turbine foundation design, named BRUNEL, said to reduce the maintenance requirements together with a new floating maintenance solution.

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Fred. Olsen 1848 started operations at the end of the last year, when its parent company Norway’s Bounheur ASA established the business, saying the new company is dedicated to developing and commercialising new technologies related to renewable energy such as floating offshore wind and floating solar.

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