Heavy hitters in heavy lifting

August 4, 2014

The Dutch have long dominated the heavy lifting market, especially offshore, and the country’s domination looks set to continue.

Earlier this year, Allseas announced plans to build a new vessel that will top by 50% the capacity of its already enormous Pieter Schelte.

Heerema Marine Contractors (HMC) is planning a new, nearly 214m-long, 97.5m-wide, semisubmersible crane vessel which will have two 10,000-tonne cranes, and would be the largest crane vessel in the world if built, knocking its own vessel, the Thialf, off the top spot. HMC is working with fellow Dutch firm Huisman on the new cranes for the unit, which Huisman says would be one of the world’s largest cranes, in revolving mode, with 145m-long booms and 210m-high tip height above the water line, with the booms up. HMC is evaluating shipyards before making a final investment decision.

Dutch offshore contractor Seaway Heavy Lifting (SHL) is involved in transport and installation and engineering, procurement, construction and installation in the oil and gas and renewables markets. It has been upgrading its fleet, comprising of the Stanislav Yudin, launched in 1985, and the DP3 Oleg Strashnov, launched in 2011.

The market for heavy lifters in the North Sea is very busy this year. In June alone, a number of major topsides and jacket installations started, from minimal facilities projects, such as Wintershall’s L6-B project to DONG Energy’s Hejre jacket offshore Denmark, lifted in by HMC’s Hermod.  Other projects include Nexen Petroleum’s North Sea Golden Eagle development topsides, which sailed out of Lamprell’s yard in Dubai early June, and Statoil’s Valemon platform topsides, which set sail for Norway from South Korea on 1 June. This is not to mention the offshore renewables market, which is providing an increasing source of lifting work.

In addition to heavy lifting, the Dutch are in the heavy transport market. Boskalis recently announced plans for a new transport vessel that would dwarf its subsidiary Dockwise’s Dockwise Vanguard.

Recently, BigRoll Shipping, a 50-50 joint venture between Dutch firms BigLift Shipping and RollDock Shipping, saw first steel cut on its BigRoll Barents.

The BigRoll Barents is the first of two MC Class DP2 module carriers the company was set up to build and operate. BigRoll Barents is scheduled for delivery from COSCO Dalian Shipyard in August 2015, followed by BigRoll Bering in October 2015.

The MC Class will have Finnish Swedish 1A ice class notation. The decks are flush with an open stern with 42m-by-125m deck space. 



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