Subocean upgrades pipelay barges for offshore wind farm work



ABERDEEN — Aberdeen-based subsea construction company Subocean Group has invested almost GBP 16 million (US$24.5 million) in cable laying equipment and the re-fit and mobilization of cable-laying barge ATM Discoverer, which is on long term charter to meet demand for services in the offshore wind sector.

Subocean has put GBP 5 million (US$47.65 million) into a long-term charter and the re-fit and mobilization of the barge. The vessel is also being equipped with a cable plough to bury the power cables up to three meters (9.8 ft) below the seabed. ATM Discoverer is being mobilized by Fergusons in Port Glasgow in a contract worth around GBP 500,000 (US$765,462) and involving 30 shipyard workers.

The company has invested GBP 5 million (US$7.65 million) in a 5,500-ton cable carrying capacity carousel for reeling the power cables on to the barge before laying the cables under the seabed. A further GBP 2 million (US$3 million) has been spent on two new specially designed cable ploughs acquired from IHC Engineering Business.

The equipment is for exclusive use on recently awarded contracts in the offshore renewable energy sector in the UK.

The company has also invested GBP 4 million (US$6.12 million) in upgrading its existing UR101 barge with a 1,000-ton cable carrying carousel and upgrading an existing cable plough to make it capable of cable burial in depths of three meters (9.8 ft).

Subocean Operations Director Mike Daniel said, “We are investing heavily in our assets to help us capitalize on the recent international and national contracts we have won in marine renewables. In addition to the booming renewables sector our North Sea and international oil and gas contracts have placed us well to continue our expansion and ambition to be a major player in the subsea construction industry.

“Demand for vessels in marine renewables remains high. By securing these barges on long-term charters, we are in a prime position to meet the needs of renewable energy companies.”

Subocean Group provides turnkey project design and implementation, including engineering, procurement, installation and commissioning of subsea facilities. It also supplies offshore management personnel, divers, life support technicians, ROV [remotely operated vehicle] operators, subsea equipment operators and offshore administrators. The company also hires out specialist subsea equipment to major contractors operating in oil and gas and offshore windfarms.


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