Seaqualize winner of 5th Offshore Wind Innovation Challenge

Seaqualize was announced winner during the final of the 5th Offshore Wind Innovation Challenge in Eindhoven this Friday afternoon. The winner now has the chance to collaborate with this year’s challenge sponsor Mammoet to further develop their Delta: Hook based Balanced Heave Compensation solution.

The Offshore Wind Innovation Challenge is organised by Offshore Wind Innovators. Every year, Offshore Wind Innovators call on leading companies to formulate an offshore wind challenge. Start-ups and small businesses companies can submit their solution.

For the fifth edition, heavy-lift specialist Mammoet challenged innovators to find a solution for transferring and lifting components to floating and fixed-bottom offshore wind turbines. As turbines grow higher and are moving further away from the coast, Mammoet sought solutions for the safe and efficient load transfer between two floating vessels, and methods to reduce the cost of turbine maintenance.

In March, the companies Seaqualize and SkyLifter were announced finalists. SkyLifter is a solar electric air crane that can vertically lift payloads beyond the technical limits of the largest helicopters. Comprising a lenticular aerostat and an underslung pod, it is a lighter than air vessel that can remain in a geo-stationary position with minimal energy expenditure.

As it floats, SkyLifter naturally removes height barriers currently in place for turbine maintenance, due to the maximum reach of available crane vessels. Capable of lifting up to 250t, it can perform maintenance of nacelle components and even blades, over a 2,000km range.

The Seaqualize Delta turns any standard heavy lifting crane into a high-performance active heave-compensated crane, up to a significant wave height. This allows operations such as floating transition piece installations, feeder barge lifts of delicate components such as turbine nacelles, and even transfers from feeder barge to floating heavy lift vessel to take place more reliably.

So much so, that during feeder barge operations it can offer over 80% higher workability during winter months, vastly extending the envelopes during which work can take place, and so keeping expensive specialist vessels busy. Rated for 600t, its full passive load control ensures smooth motion with no accidental lift-offs or re-hits, resulting in a more productive and safer workplace.

During the final at Mammoet’s Conbit operation in Eindhoven, the two finalists presented their concepts before a team of judges from Offshore Wind Innovators, Mammoet, Conbit, Shell, and Siemens Gamesa.

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