Kurt E Thomsen’s company Advanced Offshore Solutions (AOS) was a pioneer in the field of offshore windfarm installations. Here, he talks to PES about the successes of the industry and how AOS plans to meet the severe challenges it is likely to face in the near future.
PES: Welcome to PES magazine, Can you first explain a little about your company and how it operates with regards to the wind energy industry in Europe?
Kurt E Thomsen: AOS is an independent consulting company which offers consultancy services on all aspects of transport, installation, set up and execution of offshore windfarms. We also provide services in connection with operation and maintenance of offshore windfarms, health and safety (HSE) issues, where we develop project-specific HSE solutions based on the permission criteria for offshore wind projects. We also carry out technical due diligence on the offshore spreads used for the installation works and finally we offer to serve as project managers for the entire works related to install offshore windfarms.
PES: What particular challenges do the project management and transport of wind turbines in Europe present?
KET: Currently we are in a situation where one of the major developers – DONG Energy has acquired the vast majority of installation equipment. This presents both a problem to the other developers and an opportunity to new companies. However, the major problem is that there simply are not enough suitable vessels for the market looking forward. This will be a difficult situation and – unless the utilities or turbine manufacturers step in with money and re-engage in the risky part of the market, the installation work offshore – this will unfortunately, to my knowledge, become a permanent one.