With the rise of the floating production system and the race to make floating offshore wind a viable proposition, a challenge has been laid down to the marine engineering community; how do you reduce the cost of these type of installations and open the door to new energy markets? Enter Flintstone Technology.
In 2014 Flintstone established itself as a key player in the mooring products market with the release of the Buoy Turret Connector. The BTC was designed to create a simple pull-in connection and disconnection at the vessel, allowing mooring lines to be installed and replaced in a fraction of the time in comparison to existing methods. The strength of this product and the potential for more convinced Macgregor to take a controlling share of the company in 2016.
OTC 2017 marked the unveiling of Flintstone’s latest product range. Maintaining their ethos of simplicity of installation, they turned their attention to the entire mooring line. These new products offer a variety of mooring system solutions; covering catenary & taut leg, drag anchor & pile and shallow & deep water installations.
Central to this new range are their tensioning products. The goal was to remove complex and heavy tensioning equipment from the moored vessel and create robust, lightweight alternatives located on the mooring line itself. Allowing the designers of the vessels to concentrate on the vessel’s function, whatever that might be, without having to give up valuable real estate or add additional buoyancy/cost for tensioning equipment.
Mooring is only one aspect of the floating offshore industry; however Flintstone believe that their enabling technologies will help to push the overall system cost down. Thus helping their customers push forward in a cost sensitive environment, but also potentially unlocking what is undoubtedly a very lucrative market in renewables.
Andrew Clayson, Managing Director, Flintstone Technology, said: “By taking into account all aspects of a system – from installation and re-tensioning in-service, to the need to change mooring lines – we have been able to substantially reduce both the capital expenditure and the system’s ongoing running costs.”
Andrew added: “We are a small but ambitious and smart team with very competent and innovative engineers. We strive to find ways to add value to customers’ projects. This often involves challenging existing solutions, looking for ways to improve.”