Home » North Star backs new concept offshore wind support vessel

North Star backs new concept offshore wind support vessel

by Mark Cantrell
A specialist vessel operator for providing support services to offshore infrastructure has become first to pioneer a new design for an offshore wind ship.

A specialist vessel operator for providing support services to offshore infrastructure has become first to pioneer a new design for an offshore wind ship.

Designed by Chartwell Marine, based in Southampton, UK, and to be built by Norwegian shipbuilder, VARD, the Midi-SOV is a 55-metre craft intended for offshore wind projects.

North Star, headquartered in Aberdeen, Scotland, has entered an agreement with Chartwell and VARD, becoming the first to adopt and utilise the Midi-SOV, investing in upfront design fees to facilitate the vessel’s construction for European markets.

Andy Page, managing director at Chartwell Marine, said: “We designed the Midi-SOV with a clear vision of its integration into future offshore wind fleets, filling the gap that had emerged between CTVs and SOVs and addressing key operational challenges as the wind industry evolves.

“Together with VARD, we have been very encouraged by the positive response we’ve received from offshore wind operators, underscoring the industry’s readiness for new solutions that enhance efficiency, safety, and overall project costs.

“And, of course, we are delighted to continue our collaborative relationship with North Star as they take a leading role in bringing this vessel from design to reality.”

Andrew Duncan, renewables and innovations director at North Star, added: “North Star has been investigating this sector for several years and initiated the collaborative project with Chartwell and VARD as a route to market.

“Our assessment has shown that the Midi-SOV has a key role to play in European offshore wind vessel fleets, particularly as activity ramps up in the North Sea and the Baltics. We’re excited about the operational versatility the design can give us, as well as the high standards of safety, availability and cost efficiency it promises – and proud to play our part in bringing the first Midi-SOVs to market.”

Chartwell and VARD’s innovative Midi-SOV solution addresses challenges in the offshore wind sector by bridging the gap between crew transfer vessels (CTVs) and service operation vessels (SOVs), providing enhanced comfort and workability while offering a cost-effective alternative to full scale SOVs.

With a design that has been optimised based on operational data to meet the niche requirements of offshore wind developers and operators, the Midi-SOV is intended to directly complement existing fleets.


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