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Ballasting of the 14,000t SylWin Alpha platform installation, North Sea


ALE has successfully installed the Sylwin Alpha, an offshore platform weighing 14,000t.  ALE provided all necessary equipment and control systems to perform the float-over ballasting during the installation operation in the North Sea. The platform was transported from the Warnemünde fabrication site in Germany, where it had been constructed on-board the barge before being installed within challenging and confined conditions using a bespoke ballast system.


Services Required

Transport of the platform:

The platform itself was constructed on-board the Nordic Giant 101 barge,  33which was towed from the Sylwin Alpha Warnemünde fabrication site in Germany to the North Sea.


Installation of the platform:

ALE’s on-site installation team started on-shore preparation works at the fabrication site in Warnemünde with the installation of eight 24PS pumps and four 10PS pumps beneath the SylWin Alpha platform. This presented a unique challenge for both the engineering and operations teams because of the limited space under the platform. ALE designed bespoke lifting frames, pipe clamps and protect frame.


The Ballasting:

 ALE were contracted to perform the float-over ballasting during the SylWin Alpha platform installation.  Currently ALE own one of the largest fleet of ballast pumps in the world – with a total pumping capacity of over 160,000 Cu.M/Hr.


ALE provided the ballasting of the barge at the critical stage of the float-over installation for load transfer from the barge to the preinstalled jacket legs. The system delivered 14,000 CM/hr of ballast water for the float-over installation.  ALE provided all necessary equipment and control systems associated with the ballast system as well as the float-over installation supervision. The entire ballast system was designed as a bespoke project and had to overcome the challenge of a tight layout with a limited space of nine entrances 2m wide with a raised cill of 1.5m in height.

ALE’s control and monitoring system allowed the ballast operator to control the passage of ballast from inlet to outlet and the HPU to allow varied flow rates and to monitor tank levels. The ballast operator also controlled each HPU from the control room, allowing the flow rates to be varied and the monitoring of the tank levels throughout the float-over. ALE’s monitoring system provided real-time draft readouts of the barge during float-over via the use of individual transducers placed in the corresponding external draft tubes.

For the press release click here





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