North Star claims first mover on Midi-SOV design

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North Star, specialist vessel operator for offshore infrastructure support services, has been announced as the first mover on the Midi-SOV – a new offshore wind ship design developed by Chartwell Marine, a pioneer of next-generation vessel design, and VARD, a leading designer and shipbuilder of specialized vessels.

The Midi-SOV is a 55-meter offshore wind craft ready for build in the European, Asian, and US markets. North Star has entered an agreement with Chartwell and VARD becoming the first to adopt and use the Midi-SOV on offshore wind projects, investing in upfront design fees to facilitate vessel construction for European operations.

Chartwell Marine developed the Midi-SOV. (Courtesy: North Star)

“We designed the Midi-SOV with a clear vision of its integration into future offshore wind fleets, filling the gap that had emerged between CTVs and SOVs and addressing key operational challenges as the wind industry evolves,” said Andy Page, Chartwell Marine managing director.

“Together with VARD, we have been very encouraged by the positive response we’ve received from offshore wind operators, underscoring the industry’s readiness for new solutions that enhance efficiency, safety, and overall project costs. And, of course, we are delighted to continue our collaborative relationship with North Star as they take a leading role in bringing this vessel from design to reality,” said Page.

Chartwell and VARD’s Midi-SOV solution addresses challenges in the offshore wind sector by bridging the gap between Crew Transfer Vessels (CTVs) and Service Operation Vessels (SOVs), providing comfort and workability while offering a cost-effective alternative to full scale SOVs. With a design based on operational data to meet the niche requirements of offshore wind developers and operators, the Midi-SOV is intended to complement existing fleets.

The operational efficiency of the Midi-SOV was identified as one of its key advantages, evidenced by lower technician attrition rates due to the comfortable and spacious working environments provided. Furthermore, discussion included the Midi-SOV’s robust safety performance, particularly in reducing risks during technician transfers and crane operations.

“We’re excited about the operational versatility the design can give us, as well as the high standards of safety, availability and cost efficiency it promises – and proud to play our part in bringing the first Midi-SOVs to market,” said Andrew Duncan, North Star’s renewables and innovations director.

More info: www.northstarshipping.co.uk/