The 'pioneering' Bibby WaveMaster 1, the first of Damen’s purpose-built Service Operations Vessels (SOV) with Walk-to-Work (W2W) capability, has been officially launched at Damen Shipyards Galati in Romania.
Bibby Marine Services Limited, part of Bibby Line Group, will deploy the vessel to support forthcoming offshore wind construction and operations and maintenance projects in the North Sea.
Bibby WaveMaster 1 is built specifically for the transfer and accommodation of offshore personnel and aims to maximise working time, technician comfort and safety.
Stephen Blaikie, Chief Executive Officer, Bibby Marine Services, said: “This is an important key milestone in the delivery of the vessel.
“Sea trials will start soon and we will take delivery in August.
“We are very impressed with the quality of the build and the whole process has gone smoothly.”
Equipped with DYNPOS (AUTR) DP2, the 90 metre LOA vessel has a motion compensated access system (Walk-to-Work).
During the construction process, Damen customised the vessel in order to give it multi-sector versatility.
This has included adjusting the design of the elevator to the W2W gangway.
It now has six landings, meaning that technicians can directly access the gangway from the warehouse areas with a ‘stepless approach’.
Also upgrading the vessel’s workrole flexibility, Damen has increased the POB to 90 from the 60 envisioned by the standard design.
The Damen SOV is able to remain at sea for periods of up to one month at a time.
Peter Robert, Director Business Development & Market Intelligence at Damen, said: “I am honestly convinced that Damen has designed and built the best vessel for the tasks envisaged and which is going to be available on the market as of end of August this year.
“The combination of Damen and Bibby brings together a significant amount of knowledge, which has resulted in some impressive innovation.
“Carrying out the integrated HIL simulator analyses of the vessel +DP system + gangway system, in a time domain simulation with the actual controllers connected to it proves, in real life conditions, safe operations in the 2.5 metre Hs required by the tenders – the only vessel currently able to achieve this in fact.
“Based on this the shipowner can guarantee site specific vessel performance and safe operations.”