Huisman Equipment’s Hybrid Boom Crane has been nominated in The Netherlands for the Maritime Innovation Award 2015.
The Hybrid Boom Crane is designed to meet the growing operational challenges of subsea construction. Formerly named the Rope Luffing Knuckle Boom Crane, it maintains the advantage of the knuckle boom functionality, providing the low suspension point that is essential for offshore construction activities without the disadvantages of conventional knuckle boom cranes, such as the heavy boom that affects the crane load curves and the ship’s stability. The crane is designed to execute projects in deep and ultra-deep waters and is able to handle large and heavy loads in hostile environmental conditions.
The Maritime Innovation Award was introduced in 2000 by Holland Marine Equipment, the Dutch association of maritime suppliers, to increase awareness of the innovative power of the maritime and offshore supply industry and to encourage further innovation within the maritime cluster. Huisman has won the award twice: in 2012 for the dual multipurpose tower and in 2007 for complex subsea pipelay systems.
In April 2015, Huisman began the final factory acceptance testing of its first 900m Rope Luffing Knuckle Boom Crane at the quayside of the Huisman China production facility in Zhangzhou. The crane was fully assembled in the main assembly hall and upended by Huisman’s 2,400m quayside crane. It is now undergoing an intensive factory acceptance testing programme, after which it will be shipped to Hyundai Heavy Industries in Ulsan, South Korea. The crane will then be installed, commissioned and tested on board Subsea 7’s Seven Arctic.
The new crane is an active heave-compensated subsea construction crane and has been specifically selected and developed to give outstanding flexibility and capability for a range of different operational requirements. To ensure maximum efficiency, the crane can work in a number of different modes: 900 tonnes triple-fall mode; 600 tonnes dual-fall deepsea mode; 600 tones dual-fall standard mode; 600 tonnes dual-fall high lift mode; and 300 tonnes single-fall mode.
For deepsea mode, the rope luffing knuckle boom design, together with the rope capture system, allows the two wire rope falls to be widely separated at the surface, while the wide twin sheave block provides separation and anti-twisting movement at depth. This combination of features helps to eliminate the risk of cabling while maintaining a manageable wire size for more standard operations.
Huisman decided to change the name of this new hybrid type crane to better reflect its unique features.
The hybrid boom design combines the advantages of regular pedestal cranes and traditional knuckle boom cranes. Thanks to the innovative crane design the main boom and knuckle boom have a low construction weight, which means that the crane almost matches the excellent load curves of a pedestal crane with a fixed boom. With the knuckle boom in an extended position the crane offers a unique high lifting height with full lifting capacity, which is normally only available with a fixed boom. In addition, the hybrid boom design secures the key advantages of traditional knuckle boom cranes, such as a low suspension point and reduction of load swing. These advantages have made the knuckle boom crane one of the most popular tools for offshore and subsea construction activities.
The benefits of the Hybrid Boom Crane extend beyond the boom design. The crane is fully electrically driven, which provides precise control over crane and load movements, with low noise levels, reduced maintenance and no risk of oil spills. A real-time heave compensation and shock absorbing system further increases the operational weather window for the safe and accurate installation of subsea infrastructure components.