Case Study: A journey with GE towards mutual success

Posted on April 25, 2017

Keeping pace in this rapidly evolving industry is the result of building competencies and developing key relationships over time. The historic installation of Block Island Wind Farm was a result of such efforts and was a three-step journey with GE.

  • November 2013 – Alstom Haliade 150 6MW offshore turbine, Belwind.
  • April 2016 – GE Haliade 150 offshore wind turbine prototype, National Test Centre for Large Wind Turbines, Østerild.
  • August 2016 – Five GE Haliade 150-6MW, Block Island.

Belwind – the first step
In November 2013, Global Wind Service (GWS) installed the largest offshore wind turbine ever to be positioned in seawaters at the time: Alstom’s 6MW Haliade 150. The overall weight of the turbine was 1,500 tonnes and the blades were 73.5m long, with a rotor diameter of 150m.

The full scope of the contract was to supply a fully mobilised jack-up vessel, engineering services, lift supervision and technicians. GWS was contracted through Fred. Olsen related company Fred. Olsen Windcarrier to deliver a team of competent technicians.

A period of severe winds halted work, but due to the dedicated efforts of the team the project was completed successfully and GE awarded GWS the installation of their new platform at Østerild.

Østerild – testing and getting ready
GWS dispatched a team of skilled and experienced technicians in April 2016 to work on the prototype Haliade 150 offshore wind farm at Østerild’s National Test Centre for Large Wind Turbines. This project furthered our company’s knowledge of GE’s technological platform.

GWS was responsible for the full crane and installation scope, teaming up with BMS Heavy Cranes, and together we were able to perform the full installation including lifting supervision and mechanical and electrical installation.

“GWS was awarded the installation contract for our Østerild project based on the good experience we had with this company at the Belwind project in 2013. GWS was able to propose a full package for installation and manpower with crane partner BMS Heavy Cranes. This project will be good training for further collaboration, notably for GE’s next project: Block Island in the U.S.,” said GE project manager Elsa-Laure Rondeleux.

Block Island – a win-win installation
In August 2016, all parties reaped the benefits of thorough preparation. The installation of the Block Island Wind Farm was successfully completed well ahead of schedule. The five GE Haliade 150-6MW turbines were installed in only 19 days by the highly experienced GWS team who had previously conducted the Østerild installation.

“Our close and continued collaboration with GE Renewable Energy, and our related company Fred. Olsen Windcarrier, grew the extensive experience and knowledge required for this landmark project. GWS’s success was built on thorough planning, project management and assigning the right teams of technicians. Overall, the knowledge gained from this project has prepared us for the complex installations of the future,” said Michael Høj Olsen, Chief Commercial Officer of GWS.