On Thursday 22 bm. at 7.30 a.m., the powerful new-generation crane ship Les Alizés arrived at the offshore wind installation port in Eemshaven after conversion and a thirteen-day journey from Gdańsk. It will soon start work on offshore wind farms.
Les Alizés is Jan De Nul’s latest offshore wind farm installation vessel, which construction was completed by Remontowa Shiprepair Yard. Since March this year, she has aroused great interest among tourists and residents of the TriCity, who eagerly shared various photos of the ship on social media. Her huge yellow arm was visible not only from the areas adjacent to the shipyard but also from many districts even a few kilometres away from the city centre.
The ship left Gdansk early on June 9 and set course for the port of Eemshaven in the Netherlands, which is an installation and service hub for offshore wind farms, especially in the North Sea neighbouring Germany.
Built at CMHI’s Haimen (China Merchants Heavy Industries) shipyard in China, Les Alizés was formally handed over to the shipowner on 16 January this year and set sail a few days later for Remontowa, to be completed and adapted to work on the first offshore wind farm installation project.
Remontowa had just three months to carry out the huge scope of work. More than 300 tonnes of new steel structures were installed on the vessel, both made in the shipyard (platforms weighing a total of 100 tonnes) and supplied by the shipowner. Reinforcements under the deck were made. Electricians laid nearly 11 km of new cables, and comprehensive work was also done on pipes (2.5 km long and 220 mm in diameter), including hydraulic and fuel system pipelines.
Onboard equipment was installed, including two auxiliary cranes with a lifting capacity of 45 tonnes, numerous machines and equipment supplied by the shipowner. A spectacular event was the commissioning and testing of the brand new Huisman crane with a lifting capacity of 5,000 tonnes, including the lifting, moving and lowering of huge monopiles used to build wind farm foundations. Its smooth and safe operation was taken care of by Remontowa electricians, who prior to this had done a lot of work on the engines in the engine room of the main crane, which is the ‘heart’ of the vessel.
The design documentation for the shipyard and offshore work was adapted by Remontowa Marine Design and Conoship.
Specifically designed for loading, transporting, lifting and installing offshore wind turbine foundations, Les Alizés (length 236.80m, width 52.00m) is capable of installing XXL-size OWE components in float mode and with ‘ultra-low’ emissions.
The shipowner is proud to point out that, after the vessel was ordered in late 2019, fine-tuning of the design was still underway, and its versatility is to be demonstrated primarily by its innovative functional equipment, i.e. related to the vessel’s purpose. With it, it can offer solutions for next-generation offshore wind farm installation projects while improving safety and efficiency.