North Star contracts VARD for up to four new offshore wind farm commissioning vessels

May 9, 2023 | Renewables | Energy Facts Staff Writer | 2min

VARD is pleased to announce that it has signed new contracts for the design and construction of two commissioning service operation vessels (CSOVs) for the UK’s leading infrastructure support vessel operator North Star. The agreement also has an option for two additional ships, which could ultimately create a total of up to 200 new seafaring job opportunities across the CSOV fleet once operational.
North Stars offshore wind portfolio of VARD built CSO Vs and SO Vs
North Star employs 1,300 crew and onshore personnel and owns the largest wholly UK-owned fleet engaged in the North Sea. The firm has committed to delivering 40 offshore wind ships by 2040 to meet the evolving demand of offshore wind operations and maintenance (O&M) logistical support across the UK and Europe. Partners Group, a leading global private markets firm, acting on behalf of its clients, acquired North Star in 2022.
North Star’s vessel designs have been tailor-made for market leading accessibility to enable commissioning and maintenance operations to the offshore wind industry. The ships are of unique VARD 4 22 design, produced in close collaboration with Vard Design in Ålesund, Norway. They feature the latest hull design optimized for low fuel consumption and resistance, as well as high operability and comfort. The VARD 4 22 design has been developed especially for North Star, with new methanol ready hybrid-propulsion solutions and an increased number of single cabins, providing hotel quality accommodation for the technicians working in field.

These vessels are the next in a series of orders North Star has contracted with VARD so far. In 2021, the firm placed four SOV newbuild orders with VARD in Vietnam, all of which will support the world’s largest offshore wind farm, Dogger Bank, on long term charters. The first three ships will commence operations this year, ahead of schedule, with the final to be delivered in 2024.