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Success for Machine Learning Tool Designed to Improve Effectiveness of Offshore Wind Vessel to Crew Transfers

Posted on 24 January 2022

Success for Machine Learning Tool Designed to Improve Effectiveness of Offshore Wind Vessel to Crew Transfers

A machine learning tool designed to enable highly accurate assessment of safe conditions for vessel to crew transfers is proving a market success after being adopted by RWE on two of its largest offshore wind farms.

The Wind Accessibility Verification for Enhanced Safety (WAVES) was developed by Nottingham and London based, Cognitive Business – funded by the Offshore Wind Growth Partnership – and has been successfully operating on the RWE offshore wind farms Robin Rigg and Rampion.

Located midway between the Galloway and Cumbrian coasts, Robin Rigg was the first commercial offshore wind farm deployed in Scottish waters and is capable of powering enough electricity to power 117,000 homes and offset 230,000 tonnes of CO² each year.

Similarly, Rampion – located off the Sussex Coast – was the UK’s first offshore wind farm located on the South Coast.  Comprising 116 turbines, the wind farm generates enough green electricity to power the equivalent of 350,000 UK homes. 

On both sites the WAVES technology has been adopted by RWE as part of the multinational energy company’s ongoing drive for crew safety and to improve the overall efficiency of offshore wind crew transfers.

Speaking about the success of the technology on the two RWE wind farms, Ty Burridge - Oakland, Managing Director at Cognitive Business said: “The WAVES technology was designed purely to eliminate the variances of human decision making from vessel to turbine crew transfers and to significantly improve health and safety operations.

“By combining complex met-ocean data with vessel tracking data within one automated machine learning tool, we have created a highly predictive tool, providing up to 99% accuracy and which can be applied globally to any offshore wind farm to safely and effectively transfer crew to wind farm assets.”

Speaking about the success of the technology on their sites, James Vause, Offshore Production Manager at RWE Renewables said: Keeping our crew safe and making transfers that are successful and protected is vital to our operations. The WAVES solution successfully integrates powerful AI technology with RWE’s operational data, providing us with a transfer decision metric that far surpasses the industry standard, normally predicted using only wave height.

“We firmly believe WAVES has enabled us to better predict safer and more successful transfer windows, thereby improving the safety of our crew and enabling us to optimize our operation and maintenance activities.”

It is estimated that by using more accurate transfer decision data the offshore wind industry could reduce losses estimated at £25 million per year across the industry.  Cognitive Business is an industry leader in machine learning and applied A.I, developing a wide range of decision support, performance monitoring, and predictive maintenance solutions for offshore wind operations and maintenance applications.

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