Catamaran to Ease the Workload on Helicopters (UK)
Ampelmann, a high-tech offshore company focusing on development, construction and lease of offshore access solutions, has been inquired about the „walk-to-work“ solutions after the Super Puma helicopter crash last month.
Energy Voice reports that during the Offshore Energy Conference an official from the Company said that a 225ft catamaran they are planning to use in Azerbaijan, combined with their bridge technology, could be the solution to oil and gas worker transports in UK.
The catamaran will be able to carry 150 people at a time, achieving a speed of 40mph.
Business development boss Wiebe Jan Emsbroek said the current problem with boat transfers is that ”it can take up to 20 hours steaming sometimes. This makes workers sick.”
However, it is believed that the new catamaran will be able to reach a majority of North Sea platforms within two hours when sent from one of the three bases: Bergen, Sumburgh and Aberdeen.
This solution will not replace helicopter transfers, it will be used to ease the workload on air transportation.
Energy Voice quotes Oil and Gas UK’s health and safety director Robert Paterson as saying: “At certain times of the year it may offer a solution, particularly in the southern basin where there are smaller swells.”
The boat transfers could be a solution for the summer months, however they still cannot be used during rough seas in the winter period.
Paterson stated: “We need to look at developing greater resilience in the way we get people offshore. A more diverse helicopter fleet is one way of doing that, but we need to look at what the other potential options are.“
Offshore Energy Today Staff, September 06, 2013; Image: Ampelmann