Van Oord top duo Aeolus and Svanen successfully completed an offshore wind farm in August 2017. TWD did the design of a monopile gripper frame for diameters up to 11 m, hydro-hammer support frame and noise mitigation system support frame for the heavy lift vessel Svanen. Hammer and gripper frame were equipped with skidding systems on 2 tracks that were integrated in the hull of the vessel.

The previous pile gripper on the HLV Svanen has been replaced by a new advanced gripper, which is placed over the moon bay of the Svanen. TWD was requested to perform the design of the multifunctional central gripper capable of handling monopiles, storing a hydro-hammer, and deploying a noise mitigation system to mitigate the sound of hammering operations and to protect the environment.

The Svanen central pile gripper is currently the largest monopile installation tool available, capable of handling piles for diameters up to 11 meters. It makes Van Oord HLV Svanen ready for large monopiles installation in the future offshore wind farm projects. The Hammer seafastening foundation next to the gripper can store hammers up to 1200 t. Both the gripper and hammer platform can skid along the moon bay of Svanen. The hammer platform can skid over the top of the gripper during transit leaving enough free space in the moon bay. The Noise Mitigation System is also designed to be integrated under the gripper. The system opens and closes together with the pile gripper.

TWD started working with Van Oord on their HLV Svanen project since 2016. Over 40 TWD engineers and designers contributed to this very large piece of fine machinery. It is a product of creativity and bright ideas achieved by outstanding collaboration.

Overview of the system

Integrated skidding system

Opening arms to receive MP

A big TWD group on site visit

Video from Van Oord


#Svanen Centra Gripper, Van Oord, monopile gripper frame, offshore, windfarm 

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