At this year’s OTC in Houston the Damen Shipyards Group and GustoMSC announced the forming of a collaboration in order to produce a range of self-propelled and non-self-propelled jack-up platforms for the offshore industries – the DG JACK range. The collaboration will be based on GustoMSC’s strong track record in the design of jack-ups and provision of jacking systems, combined with Damen’s extensive experience in shipbuilding and vessel optimisation, financing and worldwide after-sales services.
GustoMSC Managing Director Nils van Nood said of the collaboration: “We are very pleased to team-up with Damen to provide their clients proven and reliable jack-up solutions. These jack-ups form an expansion of the Damen portfolio targeting the offshore markets in oil & gas, renewables like offshore wind, and civil construction. The jack-ups will be based on GustoMSC’s proven designs and will include GustoMSC’s proven jacking systems.
This arrangement provides the market with a total solution, drawing on the extensive experience of both companies, and on the wealth of knowledge within the Dutch maritime industry. Working together in this way, GustoMSC and Damen will be able to offer total control over the entire process, covering everything from basic design, through construction, to after-sales care – anywhere in the world.
The decision to partner up and produce the DG JACK range is based upon feedback from the offshore markets. DG JACKs will operate across the offshore spectrum, in both renewable and non-renewable sectors.
Operational experience to date has shown that jack-up vessel intervention has been required at operational windfarms to correct failures in relation to main components, both for isolated defects and to introduce design improvements. Most of the interventions have been in relation to early operational life and there is currently only a limited experience from offshore wind turbines on longer-term wear out rates and the typical length of life for critical main components, including blades, generators, transformers and gearboxes.
Consents granted to forthcoming projects indicate that this trend of scaling up is set to continue in the long term. Also, the fact that wind farms are placed farther offshore and in deeper water, means different capabilities are required than those seen in the current fleet of jack-ups operating in offshore wind. And, with the design life of offshore wind farms being between 20 and 25 years, routine operation and maintenance tasks are assured to ensure performance optimisation.