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Launching with obstacles: special ship “Boreas” floats

The Dutch specialist shipping company Van Oord is approaching the commissioning of its new installation ship “Boreas”. The launch was a challenge due to its size.

The offshore vessel was launched at the Chinese shipyard Yantai CIMC Raffles. The newbuild (with dual-fuel methanol propulsion) was specially developed for transporting and installing the next generation of foundations and turbines in offshore wind farms. Further work is now underway at CIMC Raffles. The “commercial availability” Van Oord expects in 2025.

Once completed, the “Boreas” will be the largest ship of its kind. Due to its size, the launch was also a “challenge”, according to the Dutch. company. First, the ship had to be transported from the construction site to the quay using the so-called skidding method. This was followed by laying it on two pontoons. These pontoons were then lowered, after which the “Boreas” became floatable.

“Boreas” can lift up to 3,000 tons for Van Oord

Once it has been safely moored alongside, work will continue with the installation of the main crane and the extension of the jack-up vessel’s legs.

“The launch is an important milestone for Van Oord. A big thank you to the project teams and all subcontractors and suppliers who have worked with great dedication and commitment on this crucial phase of the construction process. Now that the ‘Boreas’ is afloat, we are entering the final phase of the newbuild and we look forward to continuing our journey towards a successful delivery,” said Johan de Graaf, Project Manager Shipbuilding at Van Oord.

With the “Boreas”, Van Oord wants to prepare itself for the increasing importance of the offshore wind industry. The ship is 175 m long and has a crane with a 155 m high boom that can lift over 3,000 tons. Four legs, each 126 m long, enable the ship to be “jacked up” and work in waters up to 70 m deep. This should enable it to install the next generation of 20 MW offshore wind turbines at sea.

Compared to the “Aeolus” from the Van Oord fleet, the newbuild has 88% more deck space and over 80% more lifting capacity. The design was created by the design office Knud E. Hansen. The Dutch company had secured an option for a second ship of this type when the contract was awarded.

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Copyright: © Van Oord

Caption: The "Boreas" has been launched (© Van Oord)