Heavy lift vessel strategy analysis for offshore wind

Dinwoodie, Iain and McMillan, David; (2014) Heavy lift vessel strategy analysis for offshore wind. In: European Wind Energy Conference and Exhibition (EWEC 2013). European Wind Energy Association, GBR, pp. 1612-1620. ISBN 9781632663146

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To minimise the future cost of energy for future large, remote offshore wind farms, new maintenance methodologies may be required. This paper presents a modelling framework to test these maintenance methodologies in order to determine where different operational choices represent the cost optimal solution. The sensitivity of operational strategies to wind farm size as well as failure rates of major components has been examined in order to demonstrate the capability of the modelling approach as well as identify the strengths and weaknesses of the strategies. Fix on fail methodology has been identified as cost effective only for small wind farms where failure rates are low. Vessel purchase becomes cost effective when the wind farm is sufficiently large or failure rate is high. A batch repair approach is shown to provide comparable costs to purchasing a vessel without the large capital costs but reduces the overall power produced. Several additional areas for future model development and research have been identified.