Japan is an emerging market in the offshore wind sector with huge potential for development and an appetite for clean renewable energy from wind. The developers of the Akita offshore wind farm engaged A Squared early in the design process to help them better understand what the implications of the metocean and sea bed geotechnical conditions would be on their project and construction programme. Of particular importance was understanding the on bottom stability of the cables during installation in relatively shallow tidal waters and estimating the cable pull-in loads, so that the relevant equipment (winches, rigging and supports) could be sized appropriately.
The requirement was urgent. However, very little information was available in this early project phase. The vessel had not yet been selected, motion & environmental parameters were unknown. The A SQUARED team used their analytical and practical experience from the field to complete an analysis based on assumptions that would balance the risk an over-engineered solution with over conservatism that could place costly weather restrictions the installation operations.
Results were delivered on schedule allowing for the sizing of equipment for integration onto monopiles and transition pieces in the most efficient manner possible. Through understanding the on bottom stability of the cables during installation the customer was able to better plan the construction program and manage their risk.