The conversion of the Ile d’Yeu, which was previously used as a pipe-laying vessel, has been completed at the Remontowa Shiprepair Yard in Gdańsk. It was transformed into a cable-laying vessel able to handle subsea fibre optic telecom cables.
The Ile d’Yeu left the Remontowa Holding group’s largest shipyard on Wednesday, February 22, upgraded and fitted with the latest generation of equipment, enabling the shipowner Alcatel Submarine Networks Marine (ASN) to offer the market a high level of efficiency in the construction and maintenance of subsea transmission installations. The French company’s customers include some of the world’s largest telecommunications operators.
Firstly, Remontowa had dismantled all onboard equipment, including oversized objects associated with the vessel’s previous function, in preparation for the large-scale conversion project that led to a complete metamorphosis of the vessel.
On the Ile d’Yeu, the shipyard specialists installed a structure, previously prefabricated at Remontowa, weighing almost 700 tonnes. The so-called hangar houses specialised equipment to handle the fibre optic cables. This hangar consists of a new deck and new technical rooms spread over several floors.
The stern sheaves were installed on the vessel to lower or raise the cable from the sea bed, operated by cable engines. Due to their weight and dimensions, the transom, beyond which the stern sheaves protrude, needed to be modified, lengthening the vessel by several metres. Cable tanks were also built on the ship, and deck cranes and a lot of other specialised equipment were installed.
The first task of the converted French-flagged ship, managed by Louis Dreyfus Armateurs, will be laying a transoceanic telecommunications system.
The Ile d’Yeu is another vessel that has already gained the function of a cable-laying vessel as a result of conversion at Remontowa SA. In 2022, the yard carried out a similar project for the same shipowner on the two former Platform Supply Vessels – Ile de Molene and Cable Vigilance.
In 2020, Remontowa, also for Luis Dreyfus Armateurs, completed the conversion of another PSV into a cable ship, the Ile d’Ouessant, completely changing its configuration and equipment as part of the mobilisation to carry out the telecommunications project contracted for this vessel. Previously, the shipyard has also refurbished and modernised this French shipowner’s cable vessels on several occasions, including the Ile de Batz in 2019 and the Ile de Brehat in 2017.
The Ile d’Yeu (ex. Seven Mar, ex. Polar Queen, ex. Knight; IMO No. 9230414) was built in 2001 at South Korea’s Hyundai Mipo Dockyard – Ulsan. It is 144.6m long and 27.03m wide.