The innovative walking jack-up platform WaveWalker 1 was presented with the Product and Equipment Innovation Award at the prestigious Ground Engineering (GE) Awards ceremony in London earlier this week.
WaveWalker 1, developed by Fugro and Van Oord, is an innovative, eight-legged 'walking' jack-up barge (self-elevating work platform - SEWP) designed especially for marine operations in rough seas, surf zones, beaches and other intertidal locations where operation of traditional SEWPs is uneconomic. As well as operating safely whilst elevated, its bi-directional movement allows it to move and relocate without floating. WaveWalker 1 can considerably boost productivity in tasks such as geotechnical site investigations, drilling, trenching, pipeline and cable-laying, blasting and other marine and underwater work. In January 2013 WaveWalker 1 began its first project, where it undertook drilling and rock blasting works in the outer channel to the port of Suape in Brazil, and more than proved its worth.
The GE Product and Equipment Innovation Award is for a product or item of equipment aimed at the ground engineering or geotechnical market which has delivered improved performance or made a technique or idea possible. The entries were required to provide evidence of how their product led to increased performance, durability, safety or productivity during a project or process. Research strategy that led to the development of the product and its sales success to date were also taken into account. Key criteria included: Innovative design, ability of product/equipment to fill a gap in the market; ability to deliver cost and performance benefits; and commercial potential for use on other projects/applications.
This is the second award for the innovative walking jack-up barge; WaveWalker 1 was successful in November 2013 winning the British Engineering Excellence Award for Mechanical Product of the Year.
WaveWalker 1 is currently on location in the UK preparing for her next contract due to start in July 2014.