OHT is to enter the offshore wind turbine installation segment, having entered into a binding heads of agreement with China Merchants Heavy Industry (CMHI) in Jiangsu, China for the construction of two vessels
The deal includes options for two further units and was made through OHT’s subsidiary Vind Offshore Installation.
The vessels will be jack-ups of GustoMSC design and will be prepared to handle next-generation wind turbines. They will have a telescopic crane with a maximum capacity of 2,500 tonnes and a maximum lifting height of approximately 165 m. The new units will be capable of efficiently installing turbines in water depths up to 65 m.
OHT said particular emphasis has been placed on providing a class-leading environmental footprint by way of energy and heat recovery, battery hybrid solutions as well as a sophisticated electrical and control system, reducing CO2 emissions by 20% compared to similar units.
As a future option, the vessels have been prepared for fuel cells powered by hydrogen to be installed to cut emissions even further.
The first unit will be delivered in early 2023. The delivery structure for the second unit is flexible.
OHT chief executive Torgeir Ramstad said, “Through this initiative, OHT is firmly establishing a position as a leading, fully integrated transport and installation (T&I) company for offshore wind.
“In doing so, we are responding to client concerns about the lack of capable vessel capacity in the booming offshore wind market.”
Mr Ramstad said the company’s clients had applauded "the development of a company that can handle the T&I for next-generation foundations and turbines.”
The new venture is based on a concept and business model initially developed by Vind Offshore Installation and its founder Rune Magnus Lundetræ.
Mr Lundetræ said, “OHT already has the organisation, systems, track record and market presence required to successfully deliver and execute this initiative.
“We look forward to our involvement in the world’s first integrated pure-play T&I company in the offshore wind segment with interesting triggers for further growth, including expansion of the Alfa Lift series of foundation vessels and possibly more jack-ups through exercising the options.”
Two years ago, OHT announced a contract to build a new type of semi-submersible foundation installation vessel, the Alfa Lift, at CMHI. This vessel, to be delivered in 2021, is designed to install monopiles and jackets from a floating vessel in dynamic positioning mode to achieve higher efficiencies and reduce costs.
Combined with the company’s existing transportation fleet, OHT will be able to deliver T&I services for the largest foundations, and for new-generation turbines.
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