Damen, with its ambition to become the world’s most sustainable shipbuilder has invested considerable time over the last years investigating the potential to reduce the emissions of its products. To this end, the shipbuilder has been working together with industry partners to achieve the most significant and effective results. Damen’s offshore vessel portfolio has featured heavily in these efforts.
The CSOV 9020 – an exercise in efficiency
Over the past twelve months, this work has borne fruit and the first of a series next generation vessels is being prepared for the market. The Damen Commissioning Service Operations Vessel (CSOV) 9020 is designed to support wind farm installation in northwest European waters. As such, it fulfils a key role in the energy transition.
In alignment with this role, the vessel features an efficient propulsion system that never uses more power than is necessary. With its hybrid-electric system, the vessel has no need for a running backup diesel generator. Another feature is the advanced switching in the electric distribution system which can rapidly detect faults and take corrective actions. Taken together, these characteristics contribute to a reduction in fuel consumption – and therefore emissions – in the region of 5 – 10%.
Prepared for the future
With the CSOV 9020, Damen is also preparing for the future. The vessel's hybrid system, for instance, is ready for expansion. With this, if offshore charging becomes a possibility, the CSOV can be quickly adapted to sail fully electric and zero emissions for extended periods of time.
Potential future availability of alternative fuels has also played a role in Damen's development of the vessel. The offshore wind industry is investigating the possibility of producing clean hydrogen at wind farms. When this moment arrives, the CSOV will be well positioned to take advantage.
Continual sustainable evolution
In the first phase of this development, Damen is supporting its client in preparing the vessel to sail on hydrogen 13% of the time, with a commensurate reduction in CO2 emissions. With ongoing evolution of the design, it is the intention to work towards 100% hydrogen capability in the future.
Similarly, Damen is also preparing the CSOV to use methanol as a fuel. All tanks, cofferdams, fuel handling spaces and hazardous zones are already included. Damen is installing the vessel with a engines that can be converted to run on methanol once the market is there, which is expected within the coming decade.
Supporting the transition
To help its clients prepare for this transition, Damen is providing general arrangement plans that detail the path to a straightforward conversion. In the initial phases of using methanol as a fuel, Damen anticipates that the vessel's emissions will be reduced in the region of 85%. In time, with the expected increase in production of clean methanol, there is the potential for this to reach zero emissions.
Zero emissions offshore support
In another step towards zero emissions offshore operations, the division is currently developing a fully electric version of its Service Operations Vessel (SOV). This follows on from Damen's successful deliveries of a fully electric harbour tug and several electric ferries.
To make this efficient propulsion solution a reality for larger ships, Damen is working with UK-based MJR Power and Automation towards the development of an offshore charging system. A number of offshore wind energy companies have expressed interest in the concept, which would be a considerable boost in efficiency with the direct harnessing of wind generated energy on location.
The bigger picture
Damen’s offshore wind division is also in the preliminary stages of the development of a lifecycle sustainability assessment. In the coming years, the aim is to use this to calculate the carbon footprint of the division’s product over the entire lifecycle. The assessment will take into consideration every aspect of construction and operation, including the production of materials, the emissions created by employees getting to the work location, the recycling at the end of life and everything in between.
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