The Prysmian Group is betting on Wartsila’s retractable thrusters for the most advanced cable layer vessel in the world. Find out how its use helped Prysmian dramatically reduce installation times, especially during a pandemic, while helping improving efficiency and reliability. Its lines point to an imposing and eye-catching vessel from any perspective. The Leonarda Da Vinci could have been designed by its more renowned namesake, with its sleek appearance making it appear like something from the space-age. This is only natural when you consider that it is probably the most advanced cable-laying vessel in the world and is designed to handle the next-generation of cable technologies.
Operated by the Prysmian Group and currently, in the process of being prepared for final fit-out and finishing, the Leonardo Da Vinci is equipped to carry out the deepest power cable installations of up to 3,000 metres. This is made possible thanks to new generation cable technology armoured with composite material, based on aramid fibres, and through the use of two massive carousels which it will use to transport and lay the cables, one with a capacity of 7,000 tonnes and the other with a capacity of 10,000 tonnes, the highest capacities available in the market.
The global submarine cable market is projected to reach USD 26.16 billion by 2025, growing at a CAGR of over 12%. Vessels like the Leonardo Da Vinci will become increasingly important as the world’s demand for renewable energy grows and the need for interconnectors and cables to link offshore and onshore energy sources rise. In fact, the European Union has made increased investments in renewable energy generation a cornerstone of its strategy to help the economy recover from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and this approach will undoubtedly be replicated globally.
Its heavy-duty capabilities don’t take away from the fact that the Leonardo Da Vinci is also designed to be a more sustainable vessel with automated systems working in tandem with its 120-member crew to improve efficiency, eliminate waste and reduce emissions across the board. The vessel’s carbon emissions are among the lowest in its class. Key to this is its Dynamic Positioning system and its propulsion system, which help keep the environmental footprint low.
With a Bollard pull of about 200 tonnes, it also has the highest pulling/towing capacity in its class. The whole vessel is powered by 6 Wartsila engines – four 8V31 and two 8L20. These provide all the electricity needed on the vessel, from propulsion and mechanical to the hotel load.
The Leonardo Da Vinci is also the first Prysmian cable layer to host the advanced Wärtsilä WST-24R retractable thruster that helps better optimise station-keeping capabilities with its 8-degree, tilted propeller shaft. This helps minimise potential interactions between the thruster and hull, reducing demands on power while significantly boosting performance.