Subsea Expo

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Aker Finalises Subsea Installation Vessel Design

19 January 2011

Aker Solutions in Norway has finalised the vessel specifications of ‘AMC Connector’, a future new-build subsea installation and construction vessel based on the Aker OSCV 06L design.

With a total payload capacity of 9,000 tonnes of subsea power cables or umbilicals, the vessel will be well equipped to target the deepwater installation segment and able to take on highly complex and sizeable installation projects. AMC Connector, previously called Aker Connector, will be equipped with two turntables for high voltage power cables or subsea umbilicals: one 6,000 tonnes capacity on deck and another 3,000 tonnes capacity below deck.

At full payload the 157m x 32m ship will have a high transit speed of 16 knots which will make the vessel a highly competitive alternative for installation jobs in remote locations.

In addition, the vessel’s design enables her to operate safely and efficiently in higher waves than most other high-end construction vessels. The newbuilding will comfortably operate in significant wave height of 4 to 5m, which means that she will have an operating window at the leading edge for installation and construction vessels.

“When she is delivered in the beginning of 2012, AMC Connector will be a fantastic asset to our customers around the world. The unique wave motion characteristics will enable longer installation seasons and increased project execution predictability,” says Svein Haug, president of Aker Marine Contractors, who will operate the vessel.

The vessel will be equipped with two heave-compensated offshore cranes with 400 and 50 tonne capacity respectively that can operate down to 3,000m water depth. She will have two 3,000m capacity, remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) onboard and can accommodate 140 people.

“AMC Connector is a multi-purpose ship which will be a highly competitive cable and umbilical installation vessel, but is also equipped to perform deepwater construction work as well as other installation jobs,” adds Haug. A unique feature is the vessel’s deck flexibility, which enables her to meet a wide range of service demands. The on-deck modules can be removed from the deck within a two-day period, freeing up a total space of approximately 1,500m2. This will enable transport and installation of large spools and jumpers as well as subsea structures and manifolds.

The newbuilding is being built by STX Europe and will be outfitted at their yard at Søviknes, Norway for delivery during the first quarter of 2012. Subsea power cable provider ABB has already secured the vessel for installation campaigns during 2012 and 2013.

The vessel will be owned 50/50 by Aker Solutions and Singapore-based Ezra Holdings Ltd (Ezra), which recently acquired 100 percent of the shares in Aker Solutions’ subsidiary Aker Marine Contractors AS. As part of the agreement, Aker Solutions becomes a substantial shareholder in Ezra. The transaction is expected to be completed by March 2011.