Friede & Goldman Ltd. (F&G) has introduced BargeRack, a new solution to the feeder concept of offshore wind turbine installation. BargeRack is a safe and simple method of installing up to 20-MW wind turbines using a self-elevating vessel.
F&G's BargeRack eliminates motions between the self-elevating installation vessel and the feeder vessel, removing the need for complicated, expensive, and heavy motion compensation equipment. Uptime is increased due to much larger allowable weather windows.
Furthermore, due to the simplicity, existing U.S. infrastructure can be used which eliminates the need for purpose-built feeder vessels and/or expensive and complicated feeder barges.
The new product utilizes a trussed rack fitted to the transom of a relatively small self-elevating vessel. The feeder barge, with its turbine component cargo, is floated over the submerged rack. Once the feeder barge is secured, the self-elevating vessel uses its onboard jacking system to elevate, while also lifting the feeder barge completely out of the water. From this position, the main crane installs the wind turbine components directly from the stationary feeder barge onto the turbine foundation. After turbine installation, the self-elevating unit jacks down into the water, submerging the rack, and re-floating the now empty feeder barge.
Friede & Goldman designs self-elevating vessels and jacking system equipment. There have been over 120 F&G designed jack-ups built to date.