By Mette Jørvad
Director, Head of Communication & Marketing
Everyone likes to win. This year, it wasn’t quite our turn, although we did come a close second to the winners of Renewable UK’s Health & Safety Award 2017, the British energy company SSE, which is headquartered in Scotland. But instead of just blowing our own trumpet about being the still proud runner-up (we did make the announcement on our company website), we’d like to applaud the efforts of our offshore wind colleagues.
By Jens Frederik Hansen, CEO, A2SEA
Earlier this year, nine North Sea region countries signed an agreement aimed at building a more sustainable, secure and affordable energy supply through a much more ambitious level of cooperation. It appears there may be billions to be saved (according to European Commission studies) if we work together – and I’m certainly all for the idea. But what will the reality be? Can politicians, investors and the industry itself really deliver this potential upside by building electricity links, allowing more trading of energy and further integration of energy markets?
By Jens Nielsen, Director, Head of Procurement, A2SEA
We have now finalised two locally based mobilisations in the UK, representing a clear forward step in bringing projects and jobs to the region. So what has it been like to do this for the first time? And does it mean for the future?
By Andy Reay, A2SEA Regional Manager for the UK
The Humber may not be that long as rivers go (just 59 kilometres from one end to the other), but its lack of length isn’t about to stop it being one of the busiest spots in offshore wind energy next year. In fact, the area will be home to both operations & maintenance projects, as well as considerably more offshore construction, too.
Actually, the Humber isn’t a river at all. Situated on the east coast of northern England and flowing into the North Sea, it’s a tidal estuary formed where the River Trent and the River Ouse meet each other. In 2017, for the first time, A2SEA will be bringing two jack-up vessels to the area, kicking off two new projects that will see components being loaded out from Siemens’ new £160 million turbine blade manufacturing, project construction, assembly and service facility at Green Port Hull.
By Klaus Holm Nissen, Project Manager, A2SEA
SEA INSTALLER and her crew have just installed the eighteenth of 32 MHI Vestas V164-8.0 MW turbines at Burbo Bank Extension. So far, we’ve made excellent progress, despite having to work with a lot of new, specialised lifting equipment for these large components. With the learning curves behind us, and if the weather continues to cooperate as nicely as it has to date, we expect to be finished mid to late December.
This is the first time we’ve installed a MHI Vestas V164-8.0 MW turbine. Yet the task presents relatively few challenges for us. Perhaps the most difficult part of the project, seen from A2SEA’s point of view, is the sea bed in the area. With a lot of clay and sand, as well as some silt, it’s a tricky task to jack up securely. That kind of surface composition can be very sticky, which initially had us thinking we might have problems retracting the legs. But it didn’t turn out to be much of a problem. There were, of course, some extended pre-load periods in order for us to compress the soil sufficiently and make sure it was able to support the vessel – even in a storm.
By Hans Peter Johannsen, Vice President, Projects.
This is the third article in our series about reducing the LCoE in the offshore wind industry through optimising turbine loading, transport and installation.
A2SEA’s internal data supports wider industry observations that the cost of turbine installation per installed MW is, in fact, coming down. From our perspective (and remembering that turbine installation is a minor part of an wind farm’s overall development), there are gains to be made whenever we can load more megawatts at a time onto our vessels. This ability is strongly assisted by the increasing amount of power generated by larger turbines such as the MHI Vestas 8 MW. But that’s far from the full story.
By Kirsten Bank Christensen, Vice President, HSEQ at A2SEA A/S
Musculoskeletal injuries are an ever-present hazard in the offshore wind installation business. They’re defined as injuries that affect the human body’s movement or musculoskeletal system (muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves, discs, blood vessels and so on). And, while many have an obvious and immediate cause, such as a back injury caused by lifting a heavy object on an awkward angle, others may be ‘occupational illnesses’ – damages that creep up on a worker over many years. In any case, this is a serious issue that can have permanent and devastating consequences at both professional and personal levels.
By Tony Millward, Vice President, Tender & Contracts, A2SEA
Tendering has been part of the offshore wind industry since its inception – and it’s crucial for arriving at an efficient and safe turbine installation plan. Yet still today, there are elements of the tender process that can be improved. So what makes for a good process?
For me, one of the most important aspects to tendering is simply this: Who’s at the table? At A2SEA, we always front with a full team comprising commercial, technical and legal advisors in all phases. This hasn’t been the norm on the other side of the table – but it may well be where things are headed in the future.
By Kirsten Bank Christensen, Vice President, HSEQ, A2SEA
Mobilisation projects are a valuable opportunity for cooperatively improving site safety together with many suppliers. This is the second of two posts describing how A2SEA’s ZERO HARM Mobilisation can lift supplier safety performance, and focusing on induction, HAZID/HAZOP workshops as well as results and learnings.
By Jens Frederik Hansen, CEO, A2SEA
An organisation that can work well together as a team is the pride and joy of any CEO. And A2SEA’s recent team-building day was certainly a day to remember. Not just because my own team won (that’s not the point of a team-building day, of course), but because the company’s Team Built spirit truly came to the fore.
Arranged at Vejlefjord, and surrounded by a beautiful park and the fjords themselves, as many of the company’s staff as could be gathered for the day were put through their paces at the A2SEA Olympic Games. It was a great day that had everyone involved, at times giving their utmost in athletic performance, at other times cheering their team members on. And I’m quite sure the company’s current “From Fredericia to Berlin” fitness drive, which has almost everyone walking the equivalent of 10,000 steps a day for 60 days, helped us all to look more like Olympic stars, too.
The organisation really got behind the event – and we were lucky with the weather, which is no easy feat in Denmark, if you’re familiar with a typical Danish summer!