An offshore wind partnership has completed successful testing of innovative new installation technology which promises to reduce underwater noise and costs.
The BLUE Hammer is designed to reduce underwater noise levels by up to 20 dB (SEL) and reduce fatigue damage during installation by up to 90% Photo: The Carbon Trust
The Carbon Trust and Fistuca, in conjunction with industry partners (E.ON, EDPR, EnBW, Equinor, Ørsted, Shell, Sif, SSE, Van Oord, and Vattenfall) tested the Fistuca BLUE 25M hammer as part of the Offshore Wind Accelerator BLUE PILOT project.
“The test is another step forward in the BLUE PILOT project and we are excited to see the results of the offshore measurements and help further bring this essential innovation to the offshore wind market,” said Michael Stephenson, project manager for the Carbon Trust.
The BLUE Hammer is an innovative, new hammer which utilises a large water tank to provide a more energetic, but quieter blow for offshore installation.
It is designed to reduce underwater noise levels by up to 20 dB (SEL) and is predicted to reduce the fatigue damage during installation on the pile by up to 90%. This could not only remove the need for underwater noise mitigation but also enable secondary steel to be pre-welded to the monopile before installation, potentially unlocking ‘transition piece free’ designs.
Furthermore, by reducing the amount of time and number of operations carried out offshore, the innovative piling method improves health and safety, resulting in a significantly lower installation cost.
The offshore test onboard Van Oord’s offshore heavy lift installation vessel, Svanen, provided significant insights and understanding for future commercial operations which will allow Fistuca to optimise the hammer for future use on commercial offshore windfarms.
By Anne-Marie Causer
Source: Maritime Journal