Offshore energy support vessel operator Seacat Services has taken delivery of Seacat Weatherly, the first of two new crew transfer vessels (CTV) ordered from the Diverse Marine shipyard in Cowes, U.K.
Handed over despite the challenges and pressures created by the current coronavirus lockdown, Seacat Weatherly completed sea trials and has gone straight on to her first charter contract at a major U.K. offshore wind project.
Seacat Weatherly and its sister vessel Seacat Rainbow currently under construction and scheduled for delivery in September are Chartwell 24 catamaran designs by naval architect Chartwell Marine. Each vessel can accommodate 24 industrial personnel, alongside four crew. They feature advanced engine and hull design, a large foredeck and safety features such as step-free access, sliding handrails and unrestricted visibility from the wheelhouse, according to Seacat Services.
This has all been achieved while making use of many of the same components and equipment as her sister vessels in the 13-strong Seacat Services fleet, in order to maintain operational familiarity and ensure effective management of spares and inventory, the operator said.
Andrew Calderbank-Link, Operations Director at Seacat Services, said, “Seacat Weatherly is a fine addition to the fleet, capitalizing on all of the core attributes that have defined the Seacat Services offering to date. Refining vessel designs is vital to meeting the changing needs of the offshore wind sector and Seacat Weatherly ensures that our crews can bring maximum operational value to our customers from day one.”
As offshore wind projects grow in scale, CTV operators are placing increased emphasis on the core metrics that define effective vessel operation, including the safety and comfort of crew transfers, ‘time on turbine’ for technicians, technical availability and efficiency.
Andy Page, Naval Architect and Managing Director at Chartwell Marine, said, “The Chartwell 24 design has been formulated for the industry by the industry to meet the specific requirements of offshore wind construction and operation, both in Europe and further afield.”
A number of Chartwell 24 design vessels are currently on order at shipyards in the U.K. and U.S.
U.K.-based High Speed Transfers has also ordered a Chartwell 24 CTV from Diverse Marine, and U.S. offshore wind farm support company Atlantic Wind Transfers (AWT) has signed a multimillion-dollar, market-first order for two state-of the-art Chartwell 24 from Blount Boats.