Jul 10, 2024 | offshore marine news

Damen Shipyards has secured a contract to build a sixth Commissioning Service Operation Vessel (CSOV) for offshore personnel transfer provider Windcat, thus completing the six-ship ‘Elevation Series’ of future-proof CSOVs.

The contract marks the further strengthening of the working relationship between Damen, Windcat and CMB.Tech. Windcat will deploy the Elevation series to provide in-field technical and maintenance support to offshore wind farms for up to 30 days at a time. Damen will build this sixth CSOV at Ha Long Shipyard in Vietnam, where construction of the first five vessels is currently proceeding at various stages. The first CSOV is due to be delivered in early 2025.

Damen Sales Manager Benelux Joost van der Weiden said: “Working together with Windcat and CMB.TECH over the last few years shows the power of collaboration. Working closely with CMB.Tech to develop the hydrogen component of this vessel – turning a new technology into a proven technology – is a ground breaker for the industry. And, of course, we appreciate working with Windcat in making the entire series of six vessels effective – the fact that Windcat has ordered this sixth vessel demonstrates their clear vision.”

The Elevation series CSOV is a result of the close cooperation between three disciplines of offshore crew transfer services, future-proof fleet owner, and shipbuilding: with the three parties of Windcat, CMB.Tech and Damen bringing their respective expertise to the drawing board. Specific attention has been paid to the internal design of all six vessels of the ‘Elevation Series’.

Windcat MD Willem Van Der Wel said: “We are really excited to confirm the sixth vessel in this series of innovative, efficient and high performing vessels. Together with Damen, we have also spent a lot of time thinking about the onboard workflow of the offshore wind farm technicians; how they can move from point A to point B as efficiently as possible, both for operational efficiency and for safety.”

The final design is for an 87m long vessel that can accommodate 120 people on board. Drawing on input from CMB.Tech, as well as lessons learned from Windcat’s hydrogen-powered Crew Transfer Vessel, the CSOV will be equipped with dual-fuel hydrogen technology. This will not only substantially reduce CO2 emissions but will give Windcat a leading position in terms of using sustainable fuels.

Image: Damen’s dual-fuel hydrogen CSOV for Windcat (source: Damen Shipyards)

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