Offshore Development Services (ODS)
The Offshore Development Services is the newest business unit of Swiber. It is tasked to spearhead the corporate business development, specifically in new sectors such as the alternative energy sources - where the offshore EPIC services and marine assets of Swiber can be aligned to.
As the world's population grows at a rate of 1.14%, representing a doubling time of 61 years, we can expect the energy consumption to increase as well, especially as more countries continue to develop their economies and infrastructure.
Alternative energy is more relevant than ever in light of the three global crises that we are facing today – the energy crisis, the financial crisis and the environmental crisis.
With Swiber’s extremely strong marine and offshore O&G experience and skills base, it is well-suited to answer the emerging supply/demand imbalance for offshore wind farm installations. Sites are moving further offshore and to deeper waters as the number and size of the projects grow .
The four core business units of Swiber with their respective track record for EPIC works, marine fleet management, diving and business development will ensure comprehensive solutions to the challenging world of offshore wind turbine installations.
Wind is simply air in motion. It is caused by the uneven heating of the earth’s surface by the sun. Since the earth’s surface is made of very different types of land and water, it absorbs the sun’s heat at different rates. Today, wind energy is mainly used to generate electricity. Wind is called a renewable energy source because the wind will blow as long as the sun shines.
The modern wind power industry started in 1979 with the serial production of wind turbines by Danish manufacturers Kuriant, Vestas, Nordtank, and Bonus. These early turbines were small by today's standards, with capacities of 20 to 30 kW each. Since then, they have increased greatly in size with some of up to 7mW. Wind turbine production has expanded to many countries all over the world. As of May 2009, eighty countries around the world are using wind power on a commercial basis.
By 2010, the World Wind Energy Association expects 160GW of capacity to be installed worldwide, up from 73.9 GW at the end of 2006, implying an anticipated net growth rate of more than 21% per year. Based on this accelerated development and further improved policies ,a global capacity of more than 1,500,000 MW is possible by 2020.
According to the World Wind Energy Report 2009, offshore wind capacity continued to grow in 2009. At year’s end, there were 12 countries with wind farms installed in the sea. Ten of these countries are European and China and Japan saw some minor offshore installations. The total installed capacity grew to 2GW, with a growth rate of 30% and a share of 1.2% in the total wind capacity worldwide.
As wind power increases its share in the future energy mix, the gradual march from onshore wind to offshore wind plays out as shortage of onshore sites, particularly in Western Europe poses a difficult challenge. The dense human population competes for space with the large space needed for big-scale wind power solutions.
With the absence of hills, mountains, buildings and other structures, the installation of wind turbines offshore ensures an undisrupted supply of wind. Furthermore, offshore wind blows more predictably and less turbulently than on land.