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Improving the Safety and Productivity of Offshore Wind Technician Transit.

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Offshore technicians perform essential scheduled servicing and unscheduled maintenance of offshore wind turbines. Planning operations and maintenance activity is challenging because it is difficult to predict whether sea conditions will allow turbine technician transfer via crew transfer vessels (CTVs). Currently there is limited information for making this decision.  An added challenge is ensuring the safety and wellbeing of the technicians as they are transported in what can be very rough sea conditions, because they have to perform complex tasks once transferred to the turbine.    


The project

This project takes a novel approach by using digital technology to create a decision-making tool that will allow marine coordinators to make a more informed approach to crew transfers. This project will, for the first time, measure in parallel the motion of crew transfer vessels in certain weather conditions and sea states, as well as the psychological and physiological well-being of the technicians onboard.


The Findings

The findings from the research will then be used to create a tool that will aid marine coordinators in deciding whether or not to go ahead with technician transfers, or what special conditions the transfers may be subjected to. 

Optimising how CTVs make use of the ‘weather window’ to deliver technicians will improve O&M productivity and reduce O&M costs by as much as 2%, leading to increased turbine availability. When combined, it is estimated that this innovation will lead to a 0.7% reduction in the levelised cost of electricity; equivalent to additional revenue of >€1.2m a year for a 500MW wind farm. 

The project commenced in December 2016, and is due to complete in March 2019.  



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