MO4 and Seaqualize Offshore Wind Innovation Award 2019 winners

(L) Mark Paalvast and (R) Jelte Kymmell of MO4

On 11 December the prize for the most innovative project in the offshore wind industry was awarded for the third time. During the Q-meeting of Van Oord and Siemens Gamesa, the audience of 240 wind energy professionals awarded Seaqualize with the public prize. The prize of the professional jury went to MO4.

The jury of the Offshore Wind Innovation Award consisted of Erik-Jan de Ridder (Marin), Nick Stokman (Lucros Investment) and Erwin Coolen (Echt and de Rijke Noordzee). They looked at the innovativeness and the financial and commercial feasibility.

Next level motion forecasting
MO4 has developed software that forecasts workability of vessels in offshore operations with much more accuracy than is currently possible, by computing the influence of waves, wind and current on vessels. According to the jury, MO4 shows that innovation primarily starts with thinking carefully about what exactly the “problem” is that needs to be solved. The wave height should not determine whether a ship leaves, but that the “mobility” of the ship. This innovation not only makes it safer to operate at sea, but it also makes the assessment of workability a lot more accurate. The innovation seems to be financial solid thanks to a clear revenue model. According to Jelte Kymmell, smarter calculations can considerably lower the chagrin of many installation companies because they can operate their expensive vessels more often.

Gjalt Lindeboom of Seaqualize

Balanced Heave Compensation
The Seaqualize Delta is a flexibly deployable inline active heave compensator for loads of 600 mT and up, with unprecedented precision, enabling floating installation or (parts of) offshore wind turbines. In the jury’s opinion, this innovation is very promising. Due to robust technical development, a credible working pilot system has been developed that can form the basis for a “floating” installation of wind turbines or parts thereof. This could potentially make a further contribution to the cost price reduction in offshore wind. What strikes the jury is that apparently traditional mechanical principles can still be developed in innovative ways for new applications. The system uses 95% passive energy, which means that the system uses little energy. Or, with which Gjalt Lindeboom managed to convince the public: only 30 kW for a 600 tonne load, comparable to the capacity of 15 water kettles.

EnergyPod
Amphibious Energy was not among the prize winners. Amphibious Energy has developed the EnergyPod, a transportable, autonomous energy container. This all in one, plug and play package of wind, solar and battery storage is designed to replace diesel generator sets on the monopile transition pieces during installation. According to the jury, Amphibious Energy shows that some innovations do not have to be technically complex. There seems to be a good business case to replace the diesel generator with the sustainable EnergyPod, with – not unimportantly – a cost advantage of up to 50%. The estimate is that financing this innovation and the upscaling is quite feasible.

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