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PROJECTFOCUS


UWL achieves engineering first with monopile shipments


United Wind Logistics, United Engineering Solutions and Multi Marine Chartering combined their expertise to transport 20 monopile foundations from Germany to Taiwan for the 128 MW Formosa 1offshore wind farm.


tasked with the ocean transportation and engineering of 20 monopile foundations from Rostock, Germany, to Taichung, Taiwan. The project included the fabrication and installation of transport cradles and seafastenings, all of which were completed in association with UWL’s sister company United Engineering Solutions (UES). Successfully moving these


O


huge monopile structures, weighing up to 1,200 tonnes, over such a long distance was a transport engineering first. The main challenges of this


104 January/February 2020


n behalf of Jan De Nul Group, United Wind Logistics (UWL) was


project were not simply the pure weight, stiffness and size of the structures, but also the distance between Rostock and Taichung. The vessels used for the


move were able to transport the number of monopiles that are


normally the preserve of barges, but with the advantage of a significantly higher speed, thus shortening the transit time. This reduction led to a lower


number of load cycles during the transit, which had a positive


effect on the fatigue life of the cradle structure, the ship structure and the cargo itself. “As no reference project


existed before for such a transport, the reduction of transit time was very beneficial,” said Daniel Leonhardt, naval architect at UES. The capacity of the deck


carriers selected meant that the complete cargo was transported to Taiwan in just two sailings.


Sensitive cargo The importance of this cannot be overstated, according to Andreas Rolner, director business development and projects at UWL. He explained that monopiles, even if they are large and heavy, have to be considered as sensitive cargo. This is because the induced loads during transport might have a negative impact on the design life of the monopile structure, which could lead to huge financial repercussions later down the line. This was one reason that UES installed ABB’s Octopus-


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