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Displaying items by tag: Harland and Wolff

Harland and Wolff’s Norwegian majority owner has announced it will file for bankruptcy — but the Belfast shipyard says business will continue as usual, as the Belfast Telegraph reports.

The move comes after Dolphin Drilling ASA, formerly Fred Olsen Energy, says it failed to reach a deal with its creditors.

Harland and Wolff, which in recent years has diversified from shipbuilding to the renewable energy sector, is expected to be sold this year as part of its parent company’s restructuring plan.

A spokesperson for Harland and Wolff Heavy Industries Ltd said: “The announced developments in relation to DDASA are not expected to impact this sales process and we are operating very much on a business as usual basis.”

The Belfast Telegraph has more on the story HERE.

Published in Belfast Lough

#SeaPower - A Scottish tidal energy company is launching a new round of funding to commericalise its developments in Orkney, as HydroWorld reports.

Scotrenewables has appointed Aberdeen-based financial advisors Simmons & Company International to lead the investment process after successful testing over the last year of its SR2000 2MW floating turbine, built at Harland and Wolff in Belfast.

The grid-connected device has reportedly supplied up to 25% of Orkney’s power demands at times, with recent figures hitting 20MWh per day. HydroWorld has much more HERE.

Published in Power From the Sea

#H&W - Harland and Wolff, Belfast faces a tough year ahead having failed to secure a "sufficient workload" as the latest accounts shows a big drop in profits for 2015.

The Belfast Telegraph writes that the firm generated operating profit of £1m for the year ending December 2015, according to the latest accounts for Harland & Wolff Heavy Industries Ltd.

That was down from £8.6m a year earlier, however, turnover rose to £66.7m from £55.2m.

It says the directors consider the "results for the year are reflective of the difficult market conditions".

For more click here

Published in Belfast Lough

#Titanic - The drawing offices where the Titanic was designed could soon become a four-star hotel for Belfast's historic quarter.

According to The Irish Times, the British Heritage Lottery Fund has provided a grant of almost £5 million (€6.6m) to convert the former Harland and Wolff headquarters into 84 rooms of boutique accommodation.

And while no hotel group has as yet confirmed plans to take over the historic site at the Titanic Quarter, it's believed that the restoration funding will make the investment "much more commercially attractive".

The Titanic was not the only famous vessel to get its start at the H&W drawing offices – her sister ships the Olympic and Brittanic were also designed there, as was the warship HMS Belfast, now docked as a floating museum in London, and more than 1,000 other vessels.

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Titanic

#BelfastGiants - Belfast City residents and those living alongside the lough may have noticed a new hulk which sailed into the city recently, reports the News Letter.

A large oil rig, called the Borgny Dolphin, has docked at Harland and Wolff (H&W).

It comes just months after the leviathan-sized Blackford Dolphin which was reported on Afloat.ie, sailed out of the harbour, after many months of valuable re-fit work at the ship repair yard.

However, at the moment the H&W is not planning to do any work on the new arrival.

Instead it is simply laid up after its contract in the North Sea finished – effectively using H&W as a giant parking space while its operators figure out what to do with her next.

It could be months before a decision is made, said the firm.

 

Published in Belfast Lough

#GiantOilRig- Work is now nearing completion at Harland & Wolff which has been carrying out specialised emergency work on one of the world's biggest oil platforms, the Irish News has confirmed.

Depending on the tides in Belfast lough, the 360-foot Blackford Dolphin oil drilling rig - which as previously reported on Afloat.ie, has been in dry dock on Queen's Island since before Christmas - will finally head for home in Norway.

The multi-million-dollar renovation project on the rig, a vast industrial behemoth which has dominated the titanic Quarter skyline for months, was meant to take just 60 days. For more on the story click here.

Published in Belfast Lough

#SamsonsWorldRecord - The Belfast Telegraph reports that Harland and Wolff has broken a world record at the Belfast shipyard - by performing the world's heaviest single point WaterLoad test

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the massive Samson gantry which was cast in pink lights during the prestigious Giro d'Italia, lifted an incredible 774 tonne load to certify Harland and Wolff's latest spreader beam arrangement.

The spreader beam has been a strategic investment to support the company's handling capability for large offshore structures such as jackets and offshore modules.

The load test bags were provided by Unique Seaflex, who are specialists in marine air lift buoyancy bags and water load test weights.
They provided 24 bags of various capacities which, when filled with water, provided the total load of 766 tonne - which is the world's heaviest single point WaterLoad test.

For more including video footage of the the World's biggest single point waterload 'big-lift', click here.

 

Published in Belfast Lough

#OilRig – The Newsletter reports that the industrial behemoth that is an oil rig at Harland & Wolff, is set to remain as part of the skyline of Belfast for a number of weeks to come.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the enormous Blackford Dolphin drilling rig which made its way from Brazil last year, is currently in dry dock at Harland and Wolff as part of a re-fit project involving more than 1,000 workers.

The original contract to complete the work began last year and had run its course by around mid-February. However, she is still in the yard, and likely to stay put for at least another month. To know why, the Newsletter has more on this story.

 

Published in Belfast Lough

#Harland&Wolff – Harland & Wolff's landmark iconic cranes are to be relocated due to the refit of a massive oil rig which will act as the city's unofficial Christmas tree, bedecked with lights, as it towers over the harbour estate in a repair deal worth tens of millions of pounds.

The mammoth Blackford Dolphin oil drilling rig, originally built in 1974 in Norway, will be upgraded and repaired in the firm's 556m x 93m main building dock, starting in November for approximately 50 days.

The Aker H-3 rig underwent a major upgrade from 2006 to 2008, when Harland & Wolff designed and built accommodation blocks, power generation module, mud room and additional buoyancy.

For more on this story The Belfast Telegraph reports.

 

Published in Belfast Lough

#PORTS & SHIPPING REVIEW - Over the last fortnight Jehan Ashmore reports from the shipping scene which saw a 'Pop-Up Village' delivered by cargoship to Galway Port in readiness for the Volvo Ocean Race festival which started yesterday and continues to 8 July.

Arklow Marine Services second wind-farm support vessel (WFSV) Gardian 10 was launched for UK owners and today the vessel travelled from Arklow to Belfast Port and berthed at the Abercorn Basin.

In the rebel county, efforts to revive the Cork-Swansea route took a new step when a group was formed to ascess the feasibility in re-launching the Celtic Sea link that closed last November after Fastnet Line went into examinership.

At the Taoiseach's Public Service Excellence Awards, the Irish Maritime Energy Research Centre (IMERC) based in Haulbowline, Cork Harbour, won an award which was presented by Minister for Justice Alan Shatter T.D. at a ceremony held in Dublin Castle.

Across the world the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) highlighted the Day of the Seafarer on 25 June, where the role of those who work on ships provide a vital service in transporting essential goods on a global scale to meet our needs on a daily basis.

Dublin Port welcomed a flotilla from the Royal Netherlands Navy this weekend, where two of the vessels including a torpedo-training ship HNMLS Mercuur (A 900) was open to the public.

Today the cruiseship Saga Sapphire made her maiden 'Irish' port of call to Cobh having entered service in March for UK based operator Saga Cruises. The 706-passenger capacity ship is due to dock at Dublin Port tomorrow morning.

Former North Channel ferry stalwart Stena Caledonia which operated on the Larne/Belfast-Stranraer routes since 1990 has been sold by Stena Line to ASDP Ferry of Indonesia. She is the last ever passenger ship to have been built by Harland & Wolff shipyard in Belfast.

Published in Ports & Shipping
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Ireland's Offshore Renewable Energy

Because of Ireland's location at the Atlantic edge of the EU, it has more offshore energy potential than most other countries in Europe. The conditions are suitable for the development of the full range of current offshore renewable energy technologies.

Offshore Renewable Energy FAQs

Offshore renewable energy draws on the natural energy provided by wind, wave and tide to convert it into electricity for industry and domestic consumption.

Offshore wind is the most advanced technology, using fixed wind turbines in coastal areas, while floating wind is a developing technology more suited to deeper water. In 2018, offshore wind provided a tiny fraction of global electricity supply, but it is set to expand strongly in the coming decades into a USD 1 trillion business, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). It says that turbines are growing in size and in power capacity, which in turn is "delivering major performance and cost improvements for offshore wind farms".

The global offshore wind market grew nearly 30% per year between 2010 and 2018, according to the IEA, due to rapid technology improvements, It calculated that about 150 new offshore wind projects are in active development around the world. Europe in particular has fostered the technology's development, led by Britain, Germany and Denmark, but China added more capacity than any other country in 2018.

A report for the Irish Wind Energy Assocation (IWEA) by the Carbon Trust – a British government-backed limited company established to accelerate Britain's move to a low carbon economy - says there are currently 14 fixed-bottom wind energy projects, four floating wind projects and one project that has yet to choose a technology at some stage of development in Irish waters. Some of these projects are aiming to build before 2030 to contribute to the 5GW target set by the Irish government, and others are expected to build after 2030. These projects have to secure planning permission, obtain a grid connection and also be successful in a competitive auction in the Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS).

The electricity generated by each turbine is collected by an offshore electricity substation located within the wind farm. Seabed cables connect the offshore substation to an onshore substation on the coast. These cables transport the electricity to land from where it will be used to power homes, farms and businesses around Ireland. The offshore developer works with EirGrid, which operates the national grid, to identify how best to do this and where exactly on the grid the project should connect.

The new Marine Planning and Development Management Bill will create a new streamlined system for planning permission for activity or infrastructure in Irish waters or on the seabed, including offshore wind farms. It is due to be published before the end of 2020 and enacted in 2021.

There are a number of companies aiming to develop offshore wind energy off the Irish coast and some of the larger ones would be ESB, SSE Renewables, Energia, Statkraft and RWE.

There are a number of companies aiming to develop offshore wind energy off the Irish coast and some of the larger ones would be ESB, SSE Renewables, Energia, Statkraft and RWE. Is there scope for community involvement in offshore wind? The IWEA says that from the early stages of a project, the wind farm developer "should be engaging with the local community to inform them about the project, answer their questions and listen to their concerns". It says this provides the community with "the opportunity to work with the developer to help shape the final layout and design of the project". Listening to fishing industry concerns, and how fishermen may be affected by survey works, construction and eventual operation of a project is "of particular concern to developers", the IWEA says. It says there will also be a community benefit fund put in place for each project. It says the final details of this will be addressed in the design of the RESS (see below) for offshore wind but it has the potential to be "tens of millions of euro over the 15 years of the RESS contract". The Government is also considering the possibility that communities will be enabled to invest in offshore wind farms though there is "no clarity yet on how this would work", the IWEA says.

Based on current plans, it would amount to around 12 GW of offshore wind energy. However, the IWEA points out that is unlikely that all of the projects planned will be completed. The industry says there is even more significant potential for floating offshore wind off Ireland's west coast and the Programme for Government contains a commitment to develop a long-term plan for at least 30 GW of floating offshore wind in our deeper waters.

There are many different models of turbines. The larger a turbine, the more efficient it is in producing electricity at a good price. In choosing a turbine model the developer will be conscious of this ,but also has to be aware the impact of the turbine on the environment, marine life, biodiversity and visual impact. As a broad rule an offshore wind turbine will have a tip-height of between 165m and 215m tall. However, turbine technology is evolving at a rapid rate with larger more efficient turbines anticipated on the market in the coming years.

 

The Renewable Electricity Support Scheme is designed to support the development of renewable energy projects in Ireland. Under the scheme wind farms and solar farms compete against each other in an auction with the projects which offer power at the lowest price awarded contracts. These contracts provide them with a guaranteed price for their power for 15 years. If they obtain a better price for their electricity on the wholesale market they must return the difference to the consumer.

Yes. The first auction for offshore renewable energy projects is expected to take place in late 2021.

Cost is one difference, and technology is another. Floating wind farm technology is relatively new, but allows use of deeper water. Ireland's 50-metre contour line is the limit for traditional bottom-fixed wind farms, and it is also very close to population centres, which makes visibility of large turbines an issue - hence the attraction of floating structures Do offshore wind farms pose a navigational hazard to shipping? Inshore fishermen do have valid concerns. One of the first steps in identifying a site as a potential location for an offshore wind farm is to identify and assess the level of existing marine activity in the area and this particularly includes shipping. The National Marine Planning Framework aims to create, for the first time, a plan to balance the various kinds of offshore activity with the protection of the Irish marine environment. This is expected to be published before the end of 2020, and will set out clearly where is suitable for offshore renewable energy development and where it is not - due, for example, to shipping movements and safe navigation.

YEnvironmental organisations are concerned about the impact of turbines on bird populations, particularly migrating birds. A Danish scientific study published in 2019 found evidence that larger birds were tending to avoid turbine blades, but said it didn't have sufficient evidence for smaller birds – and cautioned that the cumulative effect of farms could still have an impact on bird movements. A full environmental impact assessment has to be carried out before a developer can apply for planning permission to develop an offshore wind farm. This would include desk-based studies as well as extensive surveys of the population and movements of birds and marine mammals, as well as fish and seabed habitats. If a potential environmental impact is identified the developer must, as part of the planning application, show how the project will be designed in such a way as to avoid the impact or to mitigate against it.

A typical 500 MW offshore wind farm would require an operations and maintenance base which would be on the nearby coast. Such a project would generally create between 80-100 fulltime jobs, according to the IWEA. There would also be a substantial increase to in-direct employment and associated socio-economic benefit to the surrounding area where the operation and maintenance hub is located.

The recent Carbon Trust report for the IWEA, entitled Harnessing our potential, identified significant skills shortages for offshore wind in Ireland across the areas of engineering financial services and logistics. The IWEA says that as Ireland is a relatively new entrant to the offshore wind market, there are "opportunities to develop and implement strategies to address the skills shortages for delivering offshore wind and for Ireland to be a net exporter of human capital and skills to the highly competitive global offshore wind supply chain". Offshore wind requires a diverse workforce with jobs in both transferable (for example from the oil and gas sector) and specialist disciplines across apprenticeships and higher education. IWEA have a training network called the Green Tech Skillnet that facilitates training and networking opportunities in the renewable energy sector.

It is expected that developing the 3.5 GW of offshore wind energy identified in the Government's Climate Action Plan would create around 2,500 jobs in construction and development and around 700 permanent operations and maintenance jobs. The Programme for Government published in 2020 has an enhanced target of 5 GW of offshore wind which would create even more employment. The industry says that in the initial stages, the development of offshore wind energy would create employment in conducting environmental surveys, community engagement and development applications for planning. As a site moves to construction, people with backgrounds in various types of engineering, marine construction and marine transport would be recruited. Once the site is up and running , a project requires a team of turbine technicians, engineers and administrators to ensure the wind farm is fully and properly maintained, as well as crew for the crew transfer vessels transporting workers from shore to the turbines.

The IEA says that today's offshore wind market "doesn't even come close to tapping the full potential – with high-quality resources available in most major markets". It estimates that offshore wind has the potential to generate more than 420 000 Terawatt hours per year (TWh/yr) worldwide – as in more than 18 times the current global electricity demand. One Terawatt is 114 megawatts, and to put it in context, Scotland it has a population a little over 5 million and requires 25 TWh/yr of electrical energy.

Not as advanced as wind, with anchoring a big challenge – given that the most effective wave energy has to be in the most energetic locations, such as the Irish west coast. Britain, Ireland and Portugal are regarded as most advanced in developing wave energy technology. The prize is significant, the industry says, as there are forecasts that varying between 4000TWh/yr to 29500TWh/yr. Europe consumes around 3000TWh/year.

The industry has two main umbrella organisations – the Irish Wind Energy Association, which represents both onshore and offshore wind, and the Marine Renewables Industry Association, which focuses on all types of renewable in the marine environment.

©Afloat 2020

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