Windcat and Damen Will Build Hydrogen-Powered CSOVs
Windcat Offshore, which earlier this year introduced the first hydrogen-powered crew transfer vessel, now plans to expand the use of hydrogen propulsion to Commission Service Operation Vessels (CSOV). The company, which is a division of Belgium’s Compagnie Maritime Belge (CMB), placed an order with Damen Shipyards for two of what they are calling “future-proof CSOVs,” along with options for further vessels.
The “Elevation Series” CSOVs were designed by Damen Shipyards, which is a pioneer in the development of the vessel concept including some of the first walk-to-work vessels, in cooperation with Windcat and CMB.TECH. According to the companies, the result is a revolutionary new design with increased capabilities and flexibility compared to existing vessels. CSOVs are designed to remain in an offshore wind farm for an extended period of up to 30 days, providing maintenance materials and housing technicians in hotel-style accommodations.
To reduce the vessels’ CO2 footprint, Windcat and CMB.TECH will provide the same dual-fuel hydrogen technology for the Elevation Series as on board the Hydrocat, the world’s first hydrogen-powered CTV. According to the companies, by following this approach they will also make a critical contribution to the development of rules and regulations related to the use of hydrogen as a fuel in medium-sized vessels.
“After 20 years of developing the CTV business in all aspects of vessel design, construction and operations, we started four years ago to lay the foundations for the creation of a ground-breaking CSOV design,” said Robbert van Rijk, Managing Director and Co-Founder of Windcat. “With this order, we are now positioned to offer best-in-class services to both the CTV and CSOV sectors on a side-by-side basis.”
The CSOVs will be built at the Ha Long Shipyard in Vietnam and will be delivered to Windcat Offshore, a new business unit within Windcat, which will focus on offshore energy commissioning and services. The vessels will be 285 feet long with accommodations for 120 people. The series will be delivered starting in 2025.
The new CSOVs will also be equipped with the latest gangway, crane, thrusters, hybrid battery technology, and offshore charging capability.