NYK Forms Partnerships to Grow Japan's Offshore Wind Power Sector

NYK forms partnerships for offshore wind power generation
Geological survey ship operated by Fugro - courtesy of NYK

Published Nov 16, 2020 4:52 PM by The Maritime Executive

The global growth in the offshore wind power sector is contributing to the ongoing investment into the sector. Japan’s NYK Line announced a new partnership to develop opportunities in offshore exploration to further expand its operations in the sector.

NYK announced that it has agreed to a memorandum of understanding with subsidiaries of Fugro headquartered in the Netherlands focusing on geological survey related to offshore wind power generation. NYK and Fugro will undertake a joint study for the operation of an offshore geotechnical investigation vessel and providing a geotechnical service that would contribute to the success of offshore wind projects off Japan.

Japan has been seeking to encourage the development of offshore wind power generation, including legislation in 2019 designed to facilitate the development of new offshore wind projects. While this is expected to spur investments in new projects, the companies noted that before constructing an offshore wind power plant, it is necessary to collect geological data in the sea area when considering the basic design of the wind turbines and the layout of the power plant.

In response to the rapidly increasing demand for undersea ground surveys, a shortage of offshore geotechnical investigation vessels has become apparent in Japan, leading NYK to decide pursue the opportunities. NYK chose to partner with Fugro, which has over 25 years’ experience in the offshore geological survey business in Europe.

The project is exploring the operation of an offshore geotechnical investigation vessel which would conduct a submarine ground survey by performing cone penetration tests, which measures resistance, friction, and water pressure, key data on ground strength necessary in the planning of new offshore installations.

This new partnership is NYK’s latest effort to realize opportunities related to the offshore wind power sector.  In January 2020, NYK and Van Oord signed a memorandum of understanding to jointly own and operate offshore wind installation vessels under the Japanese flag. The first vessel, which will have a crane capacity of more than 1,000 mt partners is expected to begin service in 2022.

NYK also announced that it was working with Northern Offshore Group of Sweden to develop a crew transfer vessel business for the offshore wind power generation sector.