On September 18, 2016 DEME launched the world’s most advanced subsea cable installation and trenching vessel ‘Living Stone’ at the LaNaval shipyard close to Bilbao, Spain. The launching ceremony was initiated by Mrs. Sarah Tommelein, spouse of Mr. Bart Tommelein, Vice-Minister-President of the Government of Flanders and Flemish Minister for Energy.
The cable installation vessel ‘Living Stone’ is engineered with the latest innovations in its category. The vessel is equipped with two turntables below deck, each having a 5,000 tons cable capacity. Together the turntables can carry and transport more than 200 km of cable that can be installed in a single trip. Ample deck space of 3,500 m2 facilitates a revolutionary cable handling system with innovative and reliable cable handling tools for cable ends, connections and cable protection systems. Furthermore, the ‘Living Stone’ can be equipped with a third carrousel above deck with an additional load capacity of 2,000 tons and a 600 tons crane. A system developed in-house by Tideway enables the ‘Living Stone’ to install cables faster and more efficiently in longer lengths and with less offshore joints than any other cable installation vessel.
The vessel will serve transport and installation projects as well as offshore power cable installations, interconnectors for the future European Supergrid amongst others.
The ‘Living Stone’ features DP3 (Dynamic Positioning 3) capability and has been designed as an environmentally friendly vessel with dual fuel engines with LNG being its prime fuel. The ‘Living Stone’ has a Green Passport and the Clean Design Notation awarded to owners and operators who choose to design and operate their vessels in an environmentally sustainable approach.
The ‘Living Stone’ can accommodate a crew of up to 100 persons and will be deployed by DEME’s Dutch subsidiary Tideway. The unique vessel is scheduled to be delivered in the second quarter of 2017 and will head to its first project at the Merkur offshore wind farm in Germany, 45 km north of Borkum in the North Sea, for the installation of inter array cables. The ‘Living Stone’ will also be deployed for the cable installation at the world’s largest offshore wind farm Hornsea Project One in the UK.