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The godmother Sophie Schulte named the first wind farm service vessel of Bernhard Schulte “WINDEA LA COUR”. Poul la Cour was a Danish meteorologist and innovator for wind turbines.

Starting from summer the vessel will work at the Gemini wind farm in the Netherlands for Siemens Wind Power Service to ensure the production of green energy from 150 wind turbines.

The usage of the so called Service Operation Vessels (SOV) will improve the efficiency of service operations at offshore wind farms. The vessel functions as a reliable and environmentally sound platform for wind farm operations and maintenance support, technician accommodation and transport, and the provision of exceptional levels of safe reliable access to installations offshore.

“With the ULSTEIN SX175 the collaborative design team of Ulstein Design & Solutions, WINDEA, Bernhard Schulte Offshore and Siemens created a vessel which perfectly fits the needs of the offshore wind industry”, Matthias Müller, Managing Director of Bernhard Schulte Offshore, said. He continued: “These SOVs are the first vessels with the new X-STERN hull shape. A vessel featuring the X-STERN can be positioned with the stern faced towards the weather instead only with the bow, leading to improved weather resilience, greater operability and reduced power and fuel consumption while on DP mode next to the wind turbine.”

The vessel is the first of two SOVs built at Ulstein Verft in Norway, which Bernhard Schulte Offshore will deliver to Siemens.

“Siemens congratulates Bernhard Schulte on the christening of the WINDEA LA COUR and we are delighted to be the first to charter this innovative new service operations vessel as we begin service operations at the Gemini wind farm in the Dutch part of the North Sea,” said René Cornelis Wigmans, Head of Maritime and Aviation Solutions, Siemens Wind Power Service.  “As the global leader in offshore wind service and the first company to deploy purpose-built SOVs, Siemens is dedicated to the development of innovative offshore service logistics that support efforts to bring down the costs associated with wind energy. The features on the WINDEA LA COUR, such as the X-STERN hull, will help ensure our technicians have a safe and highly advanced accommodations and service vessel from which to base their offshore operations at Gemini.

Both vessels are co-owned with a Chinese company. Ian Beveridge, CEO of Bernhard Schulte, said: “We are glad to extend our long relationship with ICBC Leasing by a joint venture to provide service to Siemens, which was initiated at the Chinese-German trade conference lead by Li Keqiang and Angela Merkel in 2014.

Main particulars of the vessel: Length 88 m, breadth 18 m, speed 13.5 knots, accommodation for 60 people and equipped with a motion compensated gangway system (Uptime) to transfer technicians to the wind turbine.

In addition to being the end user of the SOV for offshore wind service purposes, Siemens also was a supplier to BS Offshore for a key system aboard the vessel. The Siemens BlueDrive propulsion system helps reduce CO2 emissions and fuel consumption.

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