An Australian company unveiled a new concept, a self-propelled floating platform, in efforts to address several challenges faced in the installation process and support the growth in offshore wind generation projects.
Specifically, Windthurst launched the Oceandock LX, a 60,000m² self-propelled floating platform.
The platform is equipped with dynamic positioning technology to obtain precise locations while because it is self-propelled can easily move within a project or region, and is ballastable so that it can take up positions and remain on-site versus the current installation vessels that return to ports.
The idea is that the platform will serve as a port, warehouse, assembly point, and installation vehicle. It can house a crew of 100 for the project and with two tugs and 600 feet of dock space will function as its own port.
Onshore, ports are being challenged by the space requirements of the equipment both to warehouse it as well as provide a location for pre-assembly. The current installation process can require three vessels and each installation ship is only able to accommodate between three and six of the large generators at a time.
Oceandock would be serviced by feeder ships delivering components that can be warehoused and assembled on site. With two boom lifts and three cranes it would have the capability to perform individual lifts up to 6,000 tons as well as to warehouse and stage 500,000 tons of substations, monopile foundations, and wind turbine generator components.