By challenging traditional lifeboat design, VIKING Norsafe responds to industry demand for space- and weight-saving boats for typical crew capacities.

The 40- and 52-person VIKING Norsafe Totally Enclosed Lifeboats set new standards for compact and lightweight lifeboat-based evacuation solutions.

Major shipbuilding clients have requested alternative concepts for vessel types – especially for Offshore Service Operation vessels (SOV) – where onboard space is at a premium and space for the lifeboat and davit installation must be optimized. VIKING’s response is the ‘VNJY’ range of lifeboats, which feature a minimal deck footprint, while optimizing capacity and serviceability. In addition, the VNJY features a shorter and wider hull than usual and incorporates an innovative forward steering position that allows for additional space on board.

Using significantly less materials in manufacturing, the new VNJY lifeboats also deliver lower height and weight (up to 400 kg lighter) and are designed to achieve a reduced carbon footprint compared to previous models. The lower weight also reduces loads and the required capacities for the gravity- or hydraulic-powered davits used to launch and recover lifeboats.

“VIKING Norsafe lifeboats are built to last, which is one reason we have taken so much care over what is truly a step change for lifeboat design after over 20 years of continuous orders for our popular JYN range,” says Thomas Thompson, VIKING Technical Director, Boats & Davits. “Some customers will continue to prefer designs that have served them so well, but VNJY lifeboats offer the space-saving, lightweight solution others have been hoping for. Operators will also appreciate the way the steering position improves visibility, and the stability gains brought by extra width.”

A new offshore wind study program for professionals and fresh graduates is offered by the University of Agder, GCE NODE, Equinor, and Windport.

Flexible Learning for Offshore Wind (FLOW) is a 30 ECTS study program designed and developed for professionals who would like to re-orient their career towards the offshore wind sector, as well as fresh graduates who would like to build up their career within the offshore wind industry.

The program has four major modules of 7.5 ECTS each, comprehensively covering different aspects of offshore wind energy technology. Each main module is further divided in to three sub modules of 2.5 ECTS. The program is designed with flexibility in learning and the modules and submodules can be taken independently or in combinations.

Norway has an ambitious plan for large-scale development of its offshore wind capacity. Skilled human capacity, well-trained in various sectors of offshore wind power, is essential for the successful planning, development, and management of these large-scale offshore wind energy projects.

For example, in a recent study, it is estimated that Norway may need 52,000 new professionals in the offshore wind sector by 2050.

An efficient way to develop this required human capacity is to empower the existing workforce in the offshore industries with the skillsets required for offshore wind energy projects through focused and well-structured educational programs. Young professionals who would like to build up their career within the offshore wind industry can also benefit from such programs.

The FLOW program is offered by the University of Agder, GCE NODE, Equinor, and Windport and funded by the Directorate for Higher Education and Skills.

The study is offered at bachelor’s level at the universities/colleges. Candidates with the necessary qualifications to be admitted to a bachelor’s degree in science or technology at UiA are therefore eligible to participate in the program.

Modules will be offered mainly through online classes which will be supplemented by limited physical learning sessions. Hands-on trainings and project-based evaluation are emphasized. The program will be designed with flexible schedules to cater the needs of working professionals. The courses will be designed and implemented in close collaboration with the industries.

The four main modules are Wind energy fundamentals, Offshore wind structures, Planning, design, and development of offshore wind projects, and Operation and management of offshore wind farms.

Read more and apply by January 15, 2024

Download brochure in English

GCE NODE is defining its new strategy. At the Top Leader Forum in Kristiansand this week, 80 managers from cluster companies provided input.

In a digital survey, the managers answered a series of questions about the cluster’s most important tasks going forward. The survey was prepared by Marit Sæther, Executive Director at KPMG, which is the consulting firm assisting GCE NODE in the strategy process.

Answers from the survey will provide a foundation on which the new strategy will be built. The first draft is scheduled to be presented to the GCE NODE Board of Directors in March/April, while the strategy work should be finalized before the summer of 2024.

“We are in the process of learning what the people in the administration and participating companies think about GCE NODE’s role and focus areas,” said Sæther.

Company managers provided feedback to the strategy process in a digital survey.

Based on the answers in the survey, these were identified as GCE NODE’s most important tasks going forward:

  1. Assist participating companies in the transition
  2. Facilitate innovation processes
  3. Influence policy makers
  4. Driving offshore wind initiative
  5. Strengthening GCE NODE’s position through a focused strategy

Over the next weeks, more input into the strategy will be given by the GCE NODE administration, participating companies and the GCE NODE board.

Sæther also asked the participants what challenges the companies are likely to face between now and 2030. Access to competent workers were at the top of most lists, followed by changing markets and the need for new business models.

“We must ask ourselves this question; what problems are we going to solve? Afterwards, we need to find the right measures to solve them. My best advice to everyone who participates in the insight process, is to fall in love with the problems, not the solutions,” said Sæther.

She announced that a more comprehensive survey will be sent to the companies during January and February.

Tom Fidjeland, CEO of GCE NODE, and Marit Sæther, Executive Director at KPMG, were pleased with the response from the participants at the Top Leader Forum.