MV BigLift Baffin delivers 38 jacket foundations at Saint-Brieuc offshore wind farm


BigLift Shipping transported 38 jacket foundations from El Ferrol, Spain to Van Oord’s offshore installation vessel Aeolus in the Bay of Saint-Brieuc for the Saint-Brieuc offshore windfarm, 16.3 kilometres off the coast of Brittany.

Equipped with a state-of-the-art dynamic positioning system and her 125*42 metre flush deck, BigLift’s heavy transport vessel BigLift Baffin was the right vessel for the job.

Between June 4 and October 5, the vessel executed ten shipments, carrying the jacket foundations on deck; eight trips with four and two with three pieces. The three-legged jackets are 70 metres high and each weighs approximately 1,100 mt. The jackets were lifted and seafastened on to purpose-built quick-release systems to minimize time during the lifting operation in the field.

Out at sea, the jackets were discharged by Van Oord’s Aeolus while Biglift Baffin stayed in position using her DP2 system. This was the first project where BigLift Baffin deployed her DP2 configuration. The area near the Channel Islands is renowned for its large tidal range, which means that high current speeds must be counteracted by the DP system. Furthermore, due to the height of the jackets, the vessel experienced large windage on top of the high current. Despite the extremely challenging conditions, the DP system performed excellently.

This project was an example of an extremely fast-track project with limited time for preparation. BigLift Shipping is happy and proud that both its MC-Class vessel BigLift Baffin and the organisation have proved to be ready for this new step, and looks forward to being challenged even further in the future.

Saint-Brieuc wind farm

The Saint-Brieuc wind farm is being developed by Ailes Marines, a company wholly owned by the energy company Iberdrola’, and is the first wind farm in France equipped with jacket foundations. It contains 62 wind turbines that will generate 496 megawatts clean energy for 835,000 people.

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