Marine-i helps develop innovative mooring system for Falmouth Harbour

Marine-i has announced its support for a new mooring system in Falmouth Harbour. It’s said the new system would help to increase the operating capacity in the harbour, without the need for large-scale infrastructure development.

The project, led by Falmouth Harbour Commissioners, aims to help anchor large vessels or platforms without the requirement of large capacity lifting vessels. A modular system with numerous lightweight components enables installation, maintenance and decommissioning operations at a low cost, says Marine-i.

Two previous stages of research have identified a solution, which comprises an eight-legged mooring system with multiple gravity and drag anchors. The next stage will be the building and testing of a prototype. If these results are positive, full-scale trials of a complete modular mooring system will take place, followed by certification and commercialisation.

“This project is breaking completely new ground for mooring systems, so having access to the world-class research expertise available from the Marine-i partners has been critical in progressing the modelling of the new design,” says chief executive of Falmouth Harbour Commissioners, Miles Carden.

“If successful, the impact of this new mooring system on Falmouth Harbour operations would be felt for many years to come. We are now awaiting progress with floating offshore wind project developers prior to committing further, as a partnering approach would be preferred, but the evidence we have to date will be incredibly useful as these exciting proposals progress.”

Prof Lars Johanning, programme director for Marine-i comments: “The project will push the boundaries of the economics and feasibility of large holding power mooring systems. Gravity anchors and drag embedment anchors will be applied in a novel configuration, using very innovative techniques. There are no other modular mooring systems with suitable holding power and low mass components.

“By pioneering a completely new solution, this innovation could benefit marine operations and port infrastructure nationally – and internationally. It will also allow Falmouth Harbour to expand into important new operations, such as providing support to the emerging floating offshore wind industry in Cornwall.”

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