Vessel Tracking Solution for America’s First Offshore Wind Farm

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© copyright by Deepwater Wind

Block Island success

December 12, 2016 was a memorable milestone in the history of America’s clean renewable energy industry. It was the day when Deepwater Wind’s Block Island Wind Farm became the first offshore wind farm to deliver energy to the American power grid. Located off the shore of Rhode Island, the five offshore wind turbines that make up Block Island Wind Farm are now delivering electricity to the New England grid on a regular basis. The power produced by this pioneering wind farm is transmitted to the grid via a new sea-to-shore submarine cable system. This historic project was the result of two years of work involving more than 300 workers in the development, construction and commissioning of Block Island Wind Farm. Such a project also generates a great many vessel movements, which is where FleetMon came in.

AIS antenna installed

FleetMon operates an open database of ships and ports worldwide, which gives partners and customers access to real-time vessel position data, technical information and photos on more than 820,000 vessels. For the Block Island Wind Farm FleetMon supplied Deepwater Wind with an AIS (Automatic Identification System) antenna to enable live tracking of all the vessels involved in the construction work and, since commissioning, of maintenance activities as well. Thanks to AIS terrestrial antenna coverage Deepwater Wind has been able to achieve near-real-time position updates of all the construction and maintenance vessels. The interactive browser-based tool that makes live AIS vessel tracking possible, FleetMon Explorer, provides a near-real-time view of marine traffic and serves as an outstanding and powerful solution for operations monitoring, fleet tracking, logistics scheduling, research and traffic analysis.

Operations efficiency enhanced

Deepwater Wind has benefited from the ability to see the wind park layout and geo zones, e.g. restricted construction zones, cable positions and pylon locations – a feature that enhances the safety of all the construction and maintenance vessels as well as their crews. FleetMon Explorer also allows historical tracking of vessels that were in the Block Island area during the construction period and have been there since December 2016. Monitoring, securing and improving operations efficiency are the long-term advantages of employing FleetMon Explorer. And the FleetMon mobile app provides the same functionality on the go for pilots, captains and crew.

Collaboration to continue

The success of the first collaboration between Deepwater Wind and FleetMon has encouraged this U.S. wind farm pioneer to consider future installations of AIS antennae at various offshore locations throughout the country. As the offshore wind industry expands, FleetMon Explorer will prove a valuable asset in tracking vessel movements and help to enhance operational safety.