Dutch offshore installation company Heerema Marine Contractors has recently tested C1 Connections' C1 Wedge Connection offshore.
The C1 Wedge Connection is said to be a high-capacity connection that can be installed faster and safer than conventional bolted flange connections. It can be used in off- and onshore wind turbines, both in turbine towers and foundations.
The installation of the tower on board Heerema's semi-submersible crane vessel Thialf was performed as part of the preparations for the Arcadis Ost offshore wind project, for which Heerema will install 27 wind turbines for the Belgian developer Parkwind.
"The C1 Wedge Connection can deliver the high capacity that is needed for the next generation wind turbines, which continue to grow in size and are installed on sites in increasingly harsh environmental conditions or on floating platforms. The C1 Wedge Connection will improve the LCOE by reducing CAPEX and OPEX while allowing safer installation," Heerema said in a statement on ;odnay.
According to Heerema, conventional bolted L-flange connections are reaching their capacity limits and are complex to design, install and maintain, and this is where the C1 Wedge Connection will make a significant difference.
Heerema said that during the offshore test, C1 Connections and Heerema Marine Contractors demonstrated that the C1 Wedge Connection enables a safe disconnection of the tower from a grillage on a barge.
"The alignment and quick connection of the tower was successfully performed without any personnel below the suspended load. The C1 Wedge Connection features pre-installed fasteners, and only lightweight tools are needed to finalize the connection," Heerema said.
The development of the C1 Wedge Connection started in early 2017 in collaboration with Delft University of Technology (TU Delft).