b'OFFSHORE WIND INSTALLATION VESSELS:A COMING SHORTAGEAs turbines grow in size, few vessels in the worldwide fleet can accommodate themBy Peter Buxbaum, AJOTMay 2023 | Published in AJOT Issue #753Large wind power installations offshorecapabilitiesforinstallationvessels.generationofpurpose-builtvesselsis the United States and around the globe areAccording to a Rystad Energy report, therequired to meet demand.growing in size and scope. Also growingaverage capacity of wind turbines globally,Only a handful of vessels worldwide can is the size of the turbines being used tooutside of China, has grown from threecurrently install turbines of over ten mega-power renewable electricity. This state ofmegawattsin2010to6.5megawattswatts. According to Rystad, the demand affairs may soon pose a problem, unlessnow, with 10 megawatts being the largestfor offshore wind will outpace the supply the fleet of vessels capable of installingin current operation. Turbines larger thanof capable vessels as early as next year, as these giant offshore wind turbines growseightmegawattsaccountedfor3%ofdemand for offshore wind turbine instal-substantially. globalinstallationsbetween2010andlation vessels worldwide, excluding China, In the U.S., the passage of the Inflation2021;Rylandforecaststhatproportionwill rocket from 11 vessel years in 2021 to Reduction Act (IRA) last year representedwill surge to 53% by 2030. almost 79 vessel years by 2030. The need a game changer for the U.S. wind indus- Todaysoffshorewindprojectsarefor installation vessels for turbines larger try,saidMarceloOrtega,arenewablesincreasingly calling for 15-megawatt tur- than 9 megawatts, which was nonexistent analyst at Rystad Energy, a research firmbines. In the U.S., Empire Wind, locatedin 2019, will grow significantly by the end headquartered in Oslo. The tax credits inoffshore Long Island, will be generatingof the decade and reach 62 vessel years the bill for capital investments and produc- acapacityofovertwogigawattswithin 2030.tion are designed to build and strengthenthe installation of 138 15-megawatt windThe turbines at both Hornsea 3 and the a domestic supply chain by encouragingturbine generators. In the United Kingdom,Nordseecluster will be installed by Hav-domestic manufacturing and raw materialthe Hornsea 3 project, 75 miles off thefram Wind, an offshore wind construction sourcing from the U.S. or countries with acoast of Norfolk, will have a capacity ofcompanyheadquarteredinOslo,which free trade agreement. nearly 3 gigawatts, and will consist of 231will, in both cases, be using a newly built 15-megawatt offshore wind turbines. TheNG20000X Jack-Up Wind Turbine Instal-Bigger Blades and the SupplyNordseeclusterproject,intheGermanlation vessel with a 3,250-ton crane. The Chain NorthSea,withacapacityof1.6giga- NG20000X has the capability of installing watts, will require the installation of 104offshore wind turbines with a rotor diam-Butonesupply-chainelementnotoffshore wind turbines, also of 15-mega- eter of nearly 1,000 feet, as well as mono-addressed in the IRA involves the grow- watt capacity.piles weighing up to 3,000 tons at water ing size of offshore wind turbines beingAs operators continue to favor largerdepths of up to 230 feet. deployed and its impact on the requiredturbines, the Rystad report said, a newPatrickHarnett,avicepresidentat 20'