In the harsh conditions of the offshore wind market, crane operations can be labour-intensive, and result in excessive wear and tear to wires and sheaves. One of the biggest issues in this sector is visible during crane operations.
Typically, when cranes are travelling with low loads, it leads to poor spooling. Without a base load, the tensioning of the wires is lost and they will become loosely spooled on the drum. Once a load is added, the wires are pulled sharply into the drum once again, which causes damage over time.
This issue became the start of a new journey for us at IHC IQIP, which led to a new way of hoisting that is set to overcome these challenges and reduce offshore vessel time and costs.
Identifying multiple solutions
We began to analyse a wide range of factors associated with offshore crane movements. Initially, we concentrated on the effects of poor spooling, but in the end, we not only came up with one solution, but eight in total.
Various departments within IHC IQIP then began to fine-tune the approach using equipment that was already available. From there, we continued to turn our original sketches into reality and realised our new solution – the Combi Lifting Spread.
A range of features
By reducing the number of vertical transits required during crane operations, the Combi Lifting Spread represents a new approach to hoisting.
During a typical operation, each section must be raised to a certain height above sea level. For every piece, the crane must complete a high number of vertical transits. However, if the Lifting Connector (a key component of the Combi Lifting Spread) is instead applied, a reduction in the number of vertical transits can be achieved.
One of the key design principles on the Lifting Connector is the ring of latches around its centre, which can slot seamlessly into corresponding buckets at the top of each tool. These include the Flanged Pile Upending Tool, Transition Piece Lifting Tool, Hydrohammer and Integrated Monopile Installer. The result is a fail-safe lift and allows each tool to be introduced quickly as required.
The complete package
By using the Combi Lifting Spread structures are handled safely, while the uniform hoisting process offers predictability. In addition, less deck space and manual intervention are required, and fewer spare parts are needed.
The Combi Lifting Spread proves that IHC IQIP doesn’t only look at a problem in isolation, we go further than that in the pursuit of multiple solutions. This enables us to help our customers increase efficiency and lower costs.