Power & Energy Solutions

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Wijnand van Aalst, CEO of Van Aalst Group, talked to PES about the place of Safeway Gangway in the group. There are various gangways all providing safe walk to work solutions, with differing options depending on where they are being used. Training and safety are key and thus taken very seriously, as can be seen in the introduction of the Safeway Academy. Read on to find out more… PES: Hi Wijnand it’s great to welcome you to PES Wind. To begin with would you like to give us a brief overview of Van Aalst and explain where Safeway fits into the group? Wijnand van Aalst: The Van Aalst Group is a diversified company with decades of experiences with equipment installations on over 850 vessels. Companies extend from the Netherlands, multiple companies in Norway as well as in China. Safeway Gangway is part of the group. PES: Of course, we know about Safeway Gangways in general, but what different types are there and what are their different uses? WA: The rental fleet on Safeway consists of the Seagull type, the Safeway Seagull is the most flexible, versatile unit with roll compensation mast, stepless height elevation, hover mode, operator cabin, covered walkway, low energy consumption,

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The relentless focus on maximizing efficiency in renewable energy is a key driver in the development of both onshore and offshore wind energy equipment. From increasing blade sizes to minimizing friction in the gearbox, every aspect of wind generation has been optimized to provide maximum efficiency when the turbine is built. Attention is now shifting from efficiency at the point of manufacture, to efficiency over the lifetime of the wind turbine. One critical issue impacting this is erosion of the leading edge of the wind turbine blades by precipitation and spray. When rotating at maximum speed, offshore wind turbine blades can reach a speed of over 90 meters per second at the tip, turning usually harmless rain droplets into high-speed impactors generating shockwaves that can seriously erode the leading edge of the wind turbine blade. With standard resin and gel coating applied during manufacturing, wind turbine blades operating in areas of high precipitation require regular replacement to prevent the turbine suffering a significant decrease in power output and efficiency. Replacing blades showing signs of erosion is a credible option to maintain efficiency but is extremely costly, and a trade-off between cost and efficiency is usually considered. Advances in rain erosion protection

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In this changing world of the pandemic, PES was pleased to catch up, albeit remotely, with Geoffrey Vancassel, CEO and founder of Sterblue. This seemed very apt for a company that doesn’t need a physical presence to serve its clients. Their state-of-the-art software can save their clients huge amounts of money and be used independently. PES: Hi Geoffrey, welcome back to PES Wind. Could you introduce our new readers to Sterblue? Geoffrey Vancassel: At Sterblue we make energy infrastructure inspections easy with the support of our centralized software solutions. We help energy companies capture clean data using off-the-shelf drones and Sterblue mobile app, or upload satellite, smartphone and helicopter data into our cloud platform. This data is then processed and analysed with the help of artificial intelligence (AI) and workflow automation. In the end, we output actionable information for the maintenance team, who can access a digital twin of their assets and flexible inspection reports in one single platform. There is a video available on our website. PES: It’s been more than a year since the last time we talked. How has your business evolved? GV: By working closely with major utilities such as ESB, AEP, Enedis and EDP, we’ve learned the

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Sereema is celebrating its 6th anniversary this year. PES thought it would be a good time to ask the CEO, Jérôme Imbert, to tell us about digital and asset management strategies from the beginning, how it is now and moving forward. Six years ago, the wind industry was moving. Data was frustrating for everybody. SCADA data were available, and it seemed that the more data you had the better the control. Yet, it took so much energy to make it speak that in the end the results were, and are still, often disappointing. The asset management profession is changing But then again, until recently the focus was mainly on financial optimisation, operational expenditure control and risk management. Controlling those parameters, provided that wind potential was at the expected level, was the standard to reach the yield provided by the business plan. There’s a new deal on the table. First, prices of wind energy have plummeted and the contractual margins have shrunk. The new types of contracts, such as PPAs, are also more demanding in terms of guarantees to provide predetermined volumes of green energy

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It could meet Europe’s electricity demand seven times over, and the United States’ electricity demand four times over. In the last decade, offshore wind power has developed from an expensive rookie to a competitive source of energy. As the world’s interest in offshore wind grows, there is a rapidly growing need for cost-effective solutions. But as always, there are some major challenges. Traditionally, offshore wind has been focusing on bottom-fixed parks due to the proven design, the shallow waters and the easy accessibility. However, most other potential areas have much deeper nearshore waters which are not suitable for bottom-fixed turbines. The challenge lies in making these areas accessible for offshore wind. Floating wind technology enables wind turbine installation in deeper waters not suitable for bottom-fixed turbines. As the name implies, a floating wind turbine is not permanently fixed to the seabed but floats. It’s kept in position by a mooring system. As the offshore renewable energy sector grows, efforts to develop the technology needed for the floating wind market are also increasing in scale and scope. Most of the commercial floating wind farms are still in the development phase. The main aim is to analyze the behavior of the assets

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Ports are the arrival, transit and exit point for a large part of the world’s trade and can as such be portrayed as economic growth engines. Port activities come with a cost to the environment and the surrounding cities, where our race towards zero carbon emission also affects the way in which ports will be operated in the future. The track record of ports is often centuries long, and their development has been underpinned by the activities in the hinterland as well as the activities of the players in the port. Future port strategies must include sustainability to ensure a green future and viewed in the context of the lifetime of ports, this becomes increasingly necessary. The big contributor to carbon emissions The shipping industry is a big contributor to carbon emission. In its 2017 report on CO2 emission from international shipping DTU, the Technical University of Denmark, stated that 90% of the world’s trade is transported by ship, while 2.2% of all greenhouse gases are emitted by these ships. There is an environmental argument for the shipping industry to progress towards a greener future, which is also recognized by the International Maritime Organization targeting a 50% reduction by 2050. However, when

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Utility-scale wind turbine energy technology has developed rapidly over the past 20 years, from a few hundred kilowatts to multi-megawatt installations capable of producing enough electricity to power thousands of households. As windfarms increase both in physical size and generation capacity, with turbines growing from 2-3 megawatt (MW) today to typically 5 MW onshore and even up to 15 MW offshore, so does the need for technical innovation. Installed capacity for global wind power is expected to grow at 5.3 percent between 2019 and 2025. According to the ‘Future of Wind’ report published by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), global wind power is expected to reach over 6,000 GW by 2050. Since 2019, onshore wind power has emerged as one of the world’s most valued renewable energy sources and accounts for the largest share of growth in renewables-based energy generation. However, as the onshore market gradually reaches a saturation point, the offshore wind sector has been fast gaining momentum and is expected to witness a significant compact annual growth rate (CAGR) in the near future. Europe is still leading the way, with installed capacity growing by nearly 30 percent each year, while the UK and Germany remain the two largest offshore wind

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For over 30 years MAATS Tech have been recognised for providing quality, considerately designed equipment arrays for a plethora of vessels across a variety of capabilities. Core competencies are centred on dynamically positioned special purpose vessels for diverse operations in subsea construction, diving, cable laying and flexible pipe laying, for both new build and conversion projects. MAATS have been lucky enough to have a wealth of engineering experience at their disposal and continue to nurture this with a focus on employee development and mentoring across all departments. MAATS historically made their name consulting and designing equipment for the Oil and Gas industry but with a significant downturn of that sector in recent years, the demand for cable lay and array spread designs gave MAATS the opportunity to diversify and apply the years of industry experience to a relatively new and quickly growing arena. In previous years engineering design has relied heavily on manual calculation and the experience of the engineer, or naval architect to ‘know’ if a design will be successful. Design draughting was a standard skill, pencil and paper stuff, requiring intricate and exacting manual calculations which was time consuming and meant design variations could be quite lengthy. Chief Engineer at

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One of the most pressing issues when it comes to making wind energy fit for the future is the aspect of acceptance: acceptance among the broader public, but especially among those directly affected by it, the residents and the environment. Transponder-based aircraft detection lighting systems (ADLS) offer a sustainable solution putting non-stop blinking obstruction lights to an end and bringing back dark night skies. It was almost twenty years ago when Gerd Moeller, General Manager of Lanthan GmbH based in Bremen, Germany, was first confronted with the question of how to solve the problem of ‘light pollution’, an issue that residents, as well as the environment surrounding wind farms, are quite literally facing every single night due to the red obstruction lights on the wind turbine generators (WTG) blinking non-stop to ensure that the WTGs are always safely visible to aviation. ‘In 2002, we were already being confronted with the problem of acceptance by residents. Our first measure was the technical and legal implementation of the visibility range control. In this case, the obstruction lighting would burn less brightly in times of good visibility. In 2004, we were first introduced to the concept of on-demand lighting – lights that detect aircraft.

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Innovation, green energy, zero emissions, quality are just some of the things Tom Nevin, CEO at HST Marine, enthused about to PES. This relatively newcomer to offshore wind is a family owned business, focussed on going the extra mile for clients, whilst at the same time, looking after the needs of its personnel. It’s great to see a company thinking and acting on the needs of their workers. PES: Hi Tom it’s a real pleasure to welcome you to PES Wind. To begin with would you like to introduce us to HST? Tom Nevin: HST is a family-owned business which is just over 3 years old, as a management team we have over 60 years of ship management knowledge. We are a quality driven innovative business that have invested greatly into the next generation of offshore vessels. PES: Of course, we know you work in multi-sectors, but which do you feel are the most important and the ones you are currently developing? TN: Our main focus and expertise is in Renewables and our mission is to contribute towards the reduction of emissions from our industry. However, we have worked on coastal infrastructure projects, nearshore surveys and oil & gas projects. We feel

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