Van Oord Launches Giant Offshore Wind Installation Vessel

May 15, 2024

Van Oord has launched its new offshore installation vessel Boreas at the Yantai CIMC Raffles Offshore shipyard in China.

The Boreas’ dual fuel engine set is able to run on methanol and is purpose-built for the transport and installation of the next generation foundations and turbines at offshore wind farms.

Boreas vessel (Credit: Van Oord)
Boreas vessel (Credit: Van Oord)
Boreas vessel (Credit: Van Oord)
Boreas vessel (Credit: Van Oord)
Boreas vessel (Credit: Van Oord)
Boreas vessel (Credit: Van Oord)

The vessel is expected to be commercially available in 2025, according to Van Oord.

Upon completion, the Boreas will be the largest vessel of its kind.

The vessel measures 175 meters in length and has a crane with a 155-metre-high boom, able to lift over 3,000 tonnes. Four giant legs, each measuring 126 meters, allow the vessel to be jacked up and work in waters up to 70 meters deep. It will therefore be able to install the next generation of 20 MW offshore wind turbines at sea, Van Oord said.

In addition, the vessel will be equipped with a cutting-edge active emissions control technology (Selective Catalytic Reduction) to reduce the NOx emission to an absolute minimum. A battery pack of about 6,000 kWh can take peak loads and regenerate energy to reduce the fuel consumption and corresponding emissions even further.

Due to its size, the launch alone presented the challenging job. First, it had to be moved from the construction site to the quay, using the so-called ‘skidding method’.

Skidding is a safe and efficient load-out method for the horizontal transport of heavy and oversized objects along a linear track. The vessel was then skidded from the quay onto two pontoons.

These pontoons were later submerged in a controlled operation after which the Boreas became afloat. After safely moored alongside, the works on the Boreas will continue with the installation of the main crane and the extension of the legs of the jack-up vessel.

Meanwhile the vessel’s technical installation will be further commissioned, after which sea trails will take place to test performance.

Subsequently, the Boreas will be handed over by the shipyard to Van Oord.

“The launch of the Boreas is a major milestone for Van Oord. A big thanks to the project teams and all subcontractors and suppliers who worked with great commitment and dedication towards this crucial stage of the construction process. With the Boreas now afloat, we’re entering the final stages of the newbuilding, and we are excited to continue our journey towards successful delivery,” said Johan de Graaf, Project Manager Shipbuilding at Van Oord.

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