Lifting Projects UK, the planning, equipment and project management division of Lifting Gear UK Group, is providing lifting equipment for Smulders for the assembly of 55 jackets to be used in the construction of the Moray East Offshore Windfarm.
In a joint venture with DEME Offshore, Smulders built the top parts and lower parts for final assembly at its yard in Wallsend, due for completion in December 2020. Lifting capacity at Wallsend includes two gantry cranes which can each lift up to 600 tonnes and a large ring crane with a lifting capacity of 3,200 tonnes.
For the Moray East Offshore Windfarm job, Lifting Projects UK provided rigging drawings, lifting equipment, spreader beams, Dyneema slings and shackles required for upending the jackets during assembly.
On completion of assembly, the jackets, each with a length of 85 metres and weighing 1,000 tons, are being transported and installed off the north-eastern coast of Scotland, where they will form the basis of the one of the world’s deepest-lying wind farms. The completed 950 MW capacity wind farm project will cover 295 square kilometres and is expected to supply 950,000 households with electricity.
Lifting Gear UK Operations Director Chris Turner said: “This has been a fantastic project to be involved with. It stands out for the number and scale of the jackets, and for the timescale of the project, which demands that Smulders’ sites start on a new jacket every week, with each taking 13 weeks to construct.
“Special mention should be made to the use of Dyneema slings which have really helped expediate the lifts. With Dyneema being 10 times stronger than steel wires per unit of weight, you can reduce the overall weight of the lifting equipment, and it makes handling far easier and with fewer riggers.
“Although Dyneema slings have special benefits for wind projects, including that they are not affected by oil or water and are just as strong whether used in dry, wet, cold or humid conditions, and also that they float in water. But the real benefit for the Smulders project was in the overall reduction of lifting weight, which provided maximum speed efficiency for the required timescales.”
With headquarters in Skelmersdale, Lancashire, and 11 depots throughout the UK, the Lifting Gear UK Group consists of four divisions. The Lifting Gear UK division provides hire, sales and service for a comprehensive range of lifting products and equipment. Lifting Projects UK provides planning, equipment and project management consultancy services. Steelwise provides design and fabrication of new equipment to meet new challenges for which existing solutions do not exist. Lifting Gear Training UK offers a comprehensive range of training for the lifting sector.