When focusing on offshore installation work, it can be seen that there has been a shift from one-off installations for the oil and gas industry to repetitive installations of, for instance, offshore renewables. An important aspect, which plays a large part in the success rate of these repetitive installations, is the workability of the installation vessels.
SMIT understands the importance of workability and is looking into ways to increase the workability of their sheerlegs crane barges in an offshore environment. A proposed method to increase the workability is the use of a floating wave barrier (FWB). This FWB can be a specific structure designed for this purpose, or, as in this case, a barge used for the transportation of the structures that will then be installed by the sheerlegs crane barge.
This paper discusses the effects of a FWB on the first-order motions of the sheerlegs crane barge. Dependent on the environmental conditions, the use of a FWB can decrease the first-order motions of the vessel and increase its workability on that particular phase in the total installation sequence. When applied on the phase with the lowest workability in the installation process, this can result in a higher overall workability. The limits of the use of a FWB are also discussed, particularly with respect to wave height and period.