Seacat Columbia, one of the U.K.’s first low-emissions vessels, has commenced its service of Equinor’s Sheringham Shoal and Dudgeon offshore wind farms. Equinor confirms it has chartered Seacat Columbia (built in 2022), a new BARTech 30 crew transfer vessel (CTV), from Seacat Services, for operations at its operated offshore wind farms in Norfolk.
Seacat Columbia is a U.K.-designed, built, flagged, owned and operated CTV. The charter will cover service at the 317 MW Sheringham project and the 402 MW project, both operated by Equinor on behalf of its partners from its operations and maintenance hub in Great Yarmouth.
Seacat Columbia was designed by marine engineering consultancy BAR Technologies and built at Diverse Marine Shipyard on the Isle of Wight.
Equinor selected Seacat Columbia following a competitive tender due to its capability to reduce fuel use and carbon dioxide emissions while increasing access to offshore wind farms in harsher sea states. With its highly optimized multi-hull 30-meter ProA design and its patented Foil Optimised Stability System (FOSS), the CTV can achieve greater fuel efficiency that can cut carbon dioxide emissions by up to 1,200 tons per annum when working on the 24-hour charter of operation. By minimizing vessel motion, the CTV can see an average increase in stability across all sea states of up to 70% over a typical operational profile.
Dudgeon is owned by Equinor, Masdar and China Resources. Sheringham is owned by Equinor, Equitix Offshore 5 (co-owned by Equitix and the Renewable Investment Group TRIG) and a fund managed by Macquarie Asset Management.
On behalf of its partners, Equinor is also maturing the proposed Sheringham Shoal and Dudgeon extension projects (SEP and DEP). SEP and DEP will double the capacity of the existing Sheringham Shoal and Dudgeon wind farms.