Offshore wind developer RWE has entered a long-term vessel supply agreement with offshore vessel owner Acta Marine that it says paves the way for the decarbonization of offshore wind farm operations.
The agreement is to build and operate two ‘green’ service operation vessels, which will be among the first in the world to be built with the capability of being powered by methanol and batteries, with the potential to save up to 10,000 tons of CO2 emissions every year.
Acta Marine will begin constructing the vessels at Tersan Shipyards in Turkey during the second quarter of 2023. The vessels are expected to begin operation from the Port of Grimsby in early 2025 and 2026.
RWE said that both vessels would be methanol-ready from day one, and would support the day-to-day operations and maintenance of two of RWE’s largest offshore wind projects, at the newly operational 857megawatt (MW) Triton Knoll and the 1.4 gigawatt (GW) Sofia Offshore Wind Farm, which is now under construction.
"The SOVs will be based out of RWE’s new Grimsby Hub and support the long-term operations of the offshore assets, representing an enduring commitment to the region. The agreement will bring further investment into the port through the use of vessel support and maintenance services, local fuelling, pilotage, and other ancillary services," RWE said.
The SX216 newbuild vessels are designed by Ulstein Design and Solutions and feature the Twin X-Stern, which promises improved fuel efficiency, increased dynamic positioning capability, and reduced motions and noise, making the offshore stay more comfortable, efficient, and safe for technicians.