Damen Shipyards introduces Supplier 3210 Hybrid

Damen Shipyards introduces Supplier 3210 Hybrid
The need for vessels of this type is now a reality, with the Dogger Bank Wind Farm producing electricity for the first time in early October

Damen Shipyards has recently unveiled a new addition to its popular Fast Crew Supplier (FCS) crew transfer vessel range. Dubbed the FCS 3210 Hybrid, this vessel has been specifically designed to transport technicians to the latest generation of wind farms that are being constructed in offshore locations that are further out to sea than ever before.

The new vessel is based on Damen’s existing FCS 2710, but with a length of 32 metres, it is five metres longer. This additional length has not only increased its sea-keeping capabilities but has also allowed for the creation of free space that will be available for future low or zero-carbon propulsion systems and their fuel tanks.

In its initial design, the FCS 3210 Hybrid will have a diesel-electric power plant. This will consist of four diesel gensets that will generate electricity to both power the drive trains and charge the onboard batteries. The vessel will have a fully electric drive train from the outset, which will maximize flexibility for owners when they come to make the move to alternative fuels. The batteries will also allow the vessel to operate with zero emissions when required and can be charged using just one genset for extended, low-speed, low-emissions operations.

To further minimize emissions, the vessels will be able to connect to shore power wherever it is available to charge the batteries as well as provide electricity for their hotel systems. The diesel-electric power plant ensures that the necessary electrical infrastructure is in place to handle all the power that may be required to operate the vessel. This gives owners flexibility in selecting the actual systems that they use to supply the power. At present, this is done by the four diesel gensets and batteries, but in the future, they can be upgraded to bigger batteries, fuel cells, methanol gensets or a combination of the above.

The FCS 3210 Hybrid can carry up to 14 crew and 28 technicians for near-shore operations. It has berths for ten personnel in five cabins for long-range deployments out to sea, with the option of another two cabins on the lower deck accommodating another four personnel. With a range of up to 1200 nautical miles, it is more than capable of handling long-distance assignments, aided by a top speed of 24 knots using diesel / electric propulsion and 14 knots on full electric. The larger hull makes the journey smoother in higher sea states than smaller equivalents, further enhancing its flexibility.

According to Ruben de Jong, Design & Proposal Engineer at Damen Shipbuilding, “The need for vessels of this type is now a reality, with the Dogger Bank Wind Farm producing electricity for the first time in early October. On completion, its 277, 13 MW wind turbines will be on average 160 kilometres off the UK’s east coast. It and similar projects around the world will require fast, economical support vessels.”

The FCS 3210 Hybrid retains many of the features that have made the FCS 2710 a success. However, the larger hull together with feedback from operators of the FCS 2710 has enabled several additional enhancements. These include a larger wet room for clothing and other gear, and there is also deck space available at the stern that can be used for containerised storage of equipment. The bridge deck has been extended to take two additional cabins plus a ship’s office. Like the FCS 2710, however, personnel and equipment transfers are still made via the foredeck.

Damen has already received an order for three vessels from Purus Wind for delivery in early 2026. These vessels will be built in series for accelerated delivery and are expected to be a valuable addition to the Fast Crew Supplier range.