Zero-emission solutions for the installation and operation of floating offshore wind turbines

Energy produced from offshore wind turbines will help increase overall energy production in Norway. The country’s total need for energy in 2050 will be about twice what it is today – according to DNV’s Energy Transition Outlook. The government’s ambition is to produce almost as much new power from offshore wind as we currently produce in total in Norway. This will mean around 1500 offshore wind turbines over the next 20 years. The first major areas for offshore wind have already been launched – Utsira North and North Sea II. at south

Fred. Olsen Seawind, Hafslund and Ørsted have established Blåvinge as a long-term partnership. Blåvinge’s goal is to help achieve these overall goals. More concretely, the goal of the partnership is to develop offshore wind into a new Norwegian industry and an important source of renewable energy. This applies to both bottom-fixed and floating turbines. But for new energy to be produced as sustainably as possible, the installation and operation of offshore wind turbines must also be emission-free.

Vard has designed a zero-emission anchor handling tug supply vessel (AHTS) – a potential ammonia-powered installation vessel for offshore wind. Illustration: Vard.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The installation, operation and maintenance of offshore wind farms require extensive use of offshore vessels and in particular anchor handling vessels (AHTS). The offshore fleet in general, and not least the anchor traders, consume a lot of fuel. Today; marine diesel. For Norwegian domestic shipping, almost a quarter of greenhouse gas emissions come precisely from the offshore fleet. Emissions from these vessels must be reduced. The Parlament has asked the Government to submit requirements for low emissions to offshore vessels with a view to introduction from 2025, and that this will result in zero emissions from the same ship types in 2029- As the demand for new buildings in this segment is expected to increase, new opportunities are created. Will future offshore vessels, and “anchor traders” in particular, be able to use green ammonia as an energy carrier for maritime operations?

In addition to the partners listed on the right, Azane Fuel Solutions, a 50%-owned subsidiary of Amon Maritime, is also involved in the pilot.

The driving force of the pilot project

Blåvinge wants to explore green ammonia as an energy carrier in offshore wind operations based on:

  • Norway has particularly favorable conditions for the production and distribution of green ammonia
  • The fuel appears promising for the AHTS segment due to characteristics such as higher energy density and easier storage than several of the alternatives.

Through this pilot project, the participants will seek to seize the opportunity the green shift represents for Norwegian suppliers by:

  • Develop green solutions with great potential for export to the global offshore wind market.
  • Reduce emissions from the group of vessels responsible for the largest discharge item in Norwegian waters.
  • Develop green fuel infrastructure that will also benefit other industries.

The goal is that the installation of offshore wind turbines can be done with significantly lower greenhouse gas emissions than is possible today.

The goal of the pilot study

The objective of conducting this pilot study is to explore opportunities and barriers for realizing zero-emission solutions for the installation and operation of floating offshore wind turbines. Furthermore, the pilot study seeks to contribute to realizing the political goals of the offshore wind initiative and thus what the pilot participants consider to be enormous opportunities for exporting Norwegian technology. Initially, participants in this GSP pilot will do a feasibility study that involves assessing technical and economic feasibility. The pilot participants will also look at framework conditions and possible barriers for local ammonia value chains.

The pilot study will:

  • Assess the technical and economic feasibility of the development of an ammonia battery hybrid AHTS, and necessary bunkering solutions
  • Assess ship technology and design, bunkering systems in port and fuel availability
  • Assess framework conditions for realization
  • Identify barriers and risk mitigation measures

The main activities of the study will be to:

  • Identifying ammonia value chains
  • Explore port and logistics solutions, including bunkering and charging
  • Develop a ship design, including tank placement, propulsion and system integration
  • Assess framework conditions for realization
  • Explore financing options
  • Compile the results and assess the business case for the actors involved

Finally goal of the pilot

The ambition is that the pilot project will enable the use of green ammonia for anchor handling vessels in the installation and operation phase of Blåvinge’s floating offshore wind project on Utsira North. With such an ambition, emissions from the maritime operations for the development and operation of Utsira North and floating offshore wind in general will be reduced to a minimum. The pilot’s long-term goal is to lay a foundation so that Norway’s advantageous position can be further developed and strengthened, and thus contribute to creating a market for green ammonia. This can be achieved by establishing local ammonia value chains that enable the use of ammonia battery hybrid anchor handling vessels in the installation and operation phase of an offshore wind farm.

The ultimate goal of the pilot is to make zero-emission solutions available for the installation and operation of floating offshore wind at the Utsira North area by establishing critical local ammonia infrastructure utilized by an ammonia battery-hybrid AHTS vessel. In other words; both filling station and ship.

Status

The pilot study will be carried out as a study and compiled in a report. The study will assess:

  • Technical and economic feasibility for the development of the vessel and bunkering solutions
  • Framework conditions for realization
  • Ship technology and design
  • Bunkering system in port
  • Availability of fuel
  • Barriers and risk-reducing measures

October 2023

The pilot is considering an AHTS (anchor handling vessel) powered by ammonia and batteries, for operation between the Utsira North offshore wind farm and the port of Karmsund during the installation phase for the upcoming wind turbines.

With the aim of achieving a positive business case at an early stage, a standard AHTS design has been chosen. Such a vessel could also be used in other industries in the first years after 2030.

Work streams have been defined and work is underway, with a goal of delivery in June 2024.

Harald Gundersen og Erlend Gjelstad Jakobsen, begge Blåvinge – sammen med Eirill Bachmann Mehammer og Magnus Eide, DNV ved oppstart av piloten.

Follow

Follow us on X/Twitter and LinkedIn or leave your email address and we will keep you updated (in Norwegian)

Sign up for our monthly newsletter

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.