At 32km off the coast of Cromer, North Norfolk, the Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm is further offshore than any other UK offshore wind farm so far constructed, yet for the technicians responsible for the maintenance of the wind farm assets, this is their place of work.
Travelling to site on a regular daily basis from the O&M base in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk is not a practical option, so the marine solution for accessing the wind farm is the ‘Esvagt Njord’ Service Operations Vessel [SOV]chartered from Danish support vessel operator Esvagt.
The vessel, which is 83.7m long and 17.6m wide, provides 58 cabins to accommodate the vessel crew and the wind farm maintenance technicians. It spend two weeks at the wind farm site and then returns to the Dudgeon O&M base in Great Yarmouth for crew change and stock replenishment.
The vessel features the Uptime Walk-to-Work system to transfer technicians from the vessel onto the wind turbine generators. This offers improved levels of safety in comparison to other methods of personnel transfer.
The SOV is supported by two smaller crew transfer vessels [CTVs] which are based at the Dudgeon O&M base in Great Yarmouth.
The short films below provide an insight into the role and responsibilities of three members of the ship’s company.