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Keel-laying ceremony for second Bibby Wavemaster takes place at Damen Shipyards Galati

The next walk-to-work Damen SOV now in build

In a ceremony held last Friday, the keel-laying ceremony for Bibby Marine Services’ second Damen SOV (Service Operations Vessel) 9020 WaveMaster vessel took place at Damen Shipyards Galati, in Romania. This event takes place less than a year after Bibby Marine Services took delivery of its sister-ship Bibby Wavemaster 1. The new vessel is due for delivery in August 2019 and has been contracted by Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy and EnBW for maintenance operations on two windfarms in German waters; Hohe See and Albatros, both owned by EnBW and Enbridge. The final name will be announced after a competition within Siemens Gamesa and EnBW, however it will continue to be part of the Bibby WaveMaster series.

The SOV 9020 is a new class of purpose-built Service Operations Vessels (SOV) with Walk-to-Work (W2W) capability developed by Damen in consultation with the offshore renewables industry. The design is an entirely new concept from the ground up, combining DP2 capability, a new motion-compensated gangway, innovative hull design, a revolutionary internal layout, and a comprehensive range of additional innovations designed to increase efficiencies and reduce costs.

Bibby Marine Services placed the order for Bibby Wavemaster 1 early in 2018 following the confirmation of the charter in December 2017 by Siemens Gamesa. With the steel plates for the second vessel cut at the same time of those for the first, and some fabrication already having taken place, work has been able to begin at an accelerated pace.

We have believed in the SOV 9020 from the beginning,” says Bibby Marine Services managing director Stephen Bolton. “Siemens Gamesa and EnBW were looking for higher access to the wind turbines and this is what the SOV 9020 is built to do, with the Wavemaster 1 providing the evidence.”

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