All our knowledge and expertise combined in one contract
Boskalis is installing a new offshore platform alongside an existing gas platform for Shell in the Malampaya Gas Field in the Philippines. The deployment of an N-class multipurpose vessel plays a key role in this project.
“Three years ago Boskalis decided to move back into the cable-laying market. We know how volatile this market is and have very consciously opted for a multipurpose approach: we build ships that can not only lay cables but also be deployed for other activities. The first N-class ship, the Ndurance, was immediately equipped for cable laying. With the Ndeavor, we’ve kept our options open,” explained Bas van Bemmelen, business unit manager at Boskalis Offshore Subsea Contracting. “She has a 70 x 30 meter afterdeck where various tools can be installed depending on the work we need to do and 5,000 tonnes of rock can be transported at the same time.
“We first looked at conventional solutions for Malampaya, in the first instance dredging and rock installation using the usual vessels. We could have used a fallpipe vessel to install rock for the platform’s four foundations. We are going to use two large 200-tonne ocean-going tugs belonging to our fleet to tow the platform to the site. Then we were going to need another two 150-tonne tugs onsite to position the platform alongside the existing platform within a meter’s accuracy. Then yet another ship would have to come to fill the platform footings with iron ore to stabilize it on the seabed. All in all it meant that we would need to mobilize quite a few vessels from around the world for a few short operations.
“That’s when we decided to add dredging capability to the DP2 vessel the Ndeavor. We turned the ship into a kind of Swiss Army knife, equipping her with proven technology. In addition to a modular dredging system, a modular ballasting system and a side dumping facility we also installed a 50-meter fallpipe. Below deck there is also every kind of measuring equipment for underwater precision work. The ship will play a key role in the dredging, rock installation and positioning of the platform by the SMIT tugs, as well as in connecting the ballast hoses at a depth of 50 meters using remote-controlled equipment and injecting the iron ore into the footings. The project will conclude with the presentation of the 200-tonne connection bridge to the installation team on board of the two platforms. This project combines all our expertise.”
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