Developers of an offshore wind farm off the coast of East Anglia have hired in a new installation vessel to help reduce delays on the project.
Scira Offshore Energy, a joint venture between Statoil and Statkraft, has hired the 249ft Leviathan, owned by Norfolk-based firm Seajacks, which will work on the site from February and is contracted until the end of July.
Scira said it is hoped the vessel, due to replace the 298ft jack-up barge Sea Jack, which is moving to another wind farm, will help reduce delays to the 317MW project’s forecast schedule following a period of unseasonally poor weather.
The wind farm has 20 of 88 Siemens 3.6MW turbines installed and has been generating power since the start of August.
However, progress has been slower than anticipated due to the weather conditions and rough seas, which have been significantly worse this year than statistically average in the Greater Wash, according to Scira.
Sheringham Shoal project director Rune Rønvik said the project’s original completion date had been early 2012.
However, he said this had now been revised to the middle of the year due to the recent weather conditions and need to work in a safe environment.
“Having brought Seajacks Leviathan on board, with her significant experience and technical capabilities, we are confident we will be able to keep as close to our revised schedule as possible,” he said.
“In addition to the new vessel, we will introduce other measures including the implementation of a real-time weather, wave and wind farm data monitoring system that will enable us to capitalise on smaller weather windows and maintain our progress.”
Leviathan will join the 249ft GMS Endeavour on the project.
It has worked on the 140 turbine 500MW Greater Gabbard project off the Suffolk and Essex coast and the 102 turbine 367MW Walney Offshore Wind Farm in the Irish Sea.