GETTING THINGS DONE
Ivormatie magazine - December 2022
Before we reach the end of 2022, it’s time for a new edition of Ivormatie. This time with the theme: ‘Getting things done’. But more about that later. 2022 has been an extraordinary year so far. After several years of a global corona pandemic, everything reopened, and the Dutch economy seemed to recover rapidly. However, the (still) sky-high inflation and the war in Ukraine appear to be slowing the momentum of this recovery. Energy, fuel and goods: everything has become considerably more expensive. In addition, we are also struggling with a nitrogen crisis, a housing crisis, a personnel crisis, a refugee crisis and a climate crisis. In all this turmoil, safety, security and stability have become even more critical this year.
The theme ‘Getting things done’, or as Rotterdammers would say: ‘stop beating around the bush and get on with it’, has therefore not been pulled out of thin air. We have to buckle down and get to work to address all these challenges. Using our knowledge, experience, creativity and new technologies, we must find a way out of all these crises. We are ready to take on this challenge, and with all the knowledge we have accumulated, also in fields such as digitisation, energy transition and sustainability, we want to work on these specific issues and ultimately solve them.
Fortunately, we are already doing this. Opportunities are being seized throughout Iv to deliver our contribution. Several of these magnificent projects are showcased in this edition of Ivormatie. And this is just the beginning. If we all put our shoulder to the wheel, we will succeed in consistently making the world a little better. So let’s get on with ‘Getting things done!’
I hope you enjoy reading this edition of Ivormatie.
Maarten van de Waal CEO Iv-Groep
Iv-Groep, Corporate Development & Marketing
Ivormatie A publication of Iv-Groep b.v.
Iv-Groep b.v. P.O. Box 1155 3350 CD Papendrecht The Netherlands email@example.com www.iv-groep.com
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Cover: Topview Luchtfotografie, photographer Michael Limburg
Volume 36, No. 2, December 2022
CONTENT 6 The absorption of CO2 can be accelerated by giving nature a helping hand with technology
How Iv-Bouw can help accelerate the energy transition
The Prins Claus Bridge: unique in appearance and operation
Data-Driven Risk-Driven Enterprise Asset Management (DREAM)
Safeguarding security and prosperity from the sea
New phase in Sofia project gets underway, also for Iv-Offshore & Energy
Simplicity is the key to patent-worthy solutions
Helping the industry sector improve the water balance
Esmée Amsen and Louk Eskens
The absorption of CO2 can be accelerated by giving nature a helping hand with technology
The concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere is ever-increasing. However, due to the strong growth of solar and wind energy as a replacement for fossil fuels, this growth is slowing down, but not enough to speak of a turnaround. The startup, Paebbl, is an initiative that aims to accelerate and increase the mineralisation process of CO2 and further use it as a raw material for paper, plastic and concrete, for example. Iv-Industrie has been helping Paebbl with this special project since its foundation.
Applications for mineralised CO2
Such an idea requires reactors that can perform that natural process. A pilot installation will be set up in Rotterdam next year to gather insight and highlight areas of improvement to support largescale mineralisation and CO2 capture in the future. Besides the fact that this is beneficial for slowing climate change, it is also interesting for the market as the mineralised CO2 can be used in applications for paper, concrete and plastics, among other things.
Nature has been absorbing CO2 through mineralisation for billions of years. This is the natural process in which CO2 is permanently captured in the form of limestone (80% of carbon is stored stably in this way; the White Cliffs of Dover (limestone rocks) were also once CO2). Pol Knops – together with Marta Sjögren, Jane Walerud and Andreas Saari, the founders of Paebbl – has been toying with the idea for fifteen years of storing CO2 and accelerating the mineralisation process through technology to give nature a helping hand. Pol obtained his Master of Science at the University of Twente.
An extraordinary project in the field of process and mechanical engineering to be involved in.
“During my lifetime, the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere has increased by a third. This is an awful lot’,’ says Pol Knops. “Stones absorb CO2 as a natural process, and nature determines the pace at which this happens. So from an engineering point of view, we can accelerate that process which is why we founded Paebbl.”
Instead of developing an initiative to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, Pol reversed his thinking: couldn’t CO2 be utilised better by removing it from the air and establishing a practical application for its use? The answer is: yes, that’s possible.
The mineral rock olivine is used to absorb CO2
Process Engineer Esmée Amsen and Senior Process Specialist Louk Eskens from Iv-Industrie have also been closely involved in this project. Paebbl deliberately engaged several engineering companies, one being Iv-Industrie. Louk and Esmée are performing the basic engineering for this pilot.
large scale in a reactor unit, it must be done under high pressure (100 bar) and high temperature (180 degrees).
Pumping is not an option due to the weight of the granules.
“It’s an extraordinary project to be involved in from the beginning. Normally, an engineering company would only be called in at a later stage of development when the concept is already there. However, this time, we have been directly involved in the thought process and have actively brainstormed all the challenges and less common factors. As a result, we’ve learned a lot along the way”, says Esmée.
Urgency for nature’s sake.
Iv-Industrie was asked to design a reactor to perform the mineralisation process, which requires very specific and demanding equipment. The mineral rock olivine is used to absorb CO2. Olivine has the natural ability to do just that and already does so in nature. To absorb CO2 on a
Captures CO2 , processed on-site
Industr y emissions
DAC Paebbl on-site mineralisation unit
Direct air capture (DAC )
Louk: “For us, it is a matter of gathering a lot of information and trial and error until we finally have the answers we seek. We are currently roughly three-quarters of the way through this process. It is an extraordinary project in the field of process and mechanical engineering to be involved in.”
What makes the startup of this project, founded a year ago, so special is that it is not about the cheapest and most efficient solution. On the contrary, it is about the most sustainable solution. This path was deliberately chosen, even if it is more expensive and takes more time to design and build.
“The best thing is that everyone involved with Paebbl is incredibly motivated to contribute and share knowledge and findings. Moreover, this enthusiasm is contagious”, says Esmée. “There is no urgency because of economic interest but for nature’s sake. I like that.”
Several plant installations have now been developed: a medium-sized one that can, for example, be placed next to a paper mill to take up CO2 locally. And a large factory that connects to a pipeline and captures CO2. The goal of both is to help the industry sectors achieve CO2 neutrality.
It is a unique collaboration whereby all involved keep the others informed and up to date.
A so-called ‘HAZOP’ study is currently underway: hazard and operability. This study will determine at a detailed level where the (failure) risks lie during the operation of a plant and how these risks can be reduced.
Captures CO2 , processed on-site
rock Ground olivine CO2-storing mineral lter CO2-storing mineral lter Paebbl on-site mineralisation unit 9
“THE APPROACH IS THAT WE CAPTURE CO 2 BUT ALSO CREATE A PRODUCT FROM IT ”
Pumping under challenging conditions
The greatest challenge lies in the functioning of the pumps needed to pump ground olivine. To what extent should the powder be dosed to do its job under the challenging conditions of high pressure and high temperature?
To make a significant impact, you must begin small, like the test phase in Rotterdam.
“That’s quite a challenge”, says Louk. “But it can certainly work. The great thing about Paebbl is that they want us to try it via a pilot setup. So I think it’s realistic that we will have that installation in place within a year and a half. And even then, we will remain involved in terms of aftercare, of course.”
As far as Louk is concerned, optimism is the most beautiful aspect of this project. “There are many obstacles, but also because this is all new territory. No matter how many hurdles are encountered: we will eventually get there, is the thought. An obstacle doesn’t stop anyone from attaining their goal.”
Pol: “The approach is that we capture CO2 but also create a product from it. That market is potentially big.” But at the same time, he realises that this has been a process of years’ worth of work and that it will likely be years before Paebbl makes a more significant impact. “As a chemist concerned about our natural world, this doesn’t make you happy. But the flip side is that we will be capturing a large percentage of CO2 thirty years from now. That is, of course, very advantageous, both for engineering and us.”
Feasible and scalable
Paebbl’s goal is to make a significant impact. Starting small, like the test phase in Rotterdam, will form the beginning of that. “In addition, it must be feasible and scalable. I look forward to the testing phase, in which many answers will be presented. I think it’s fantastic that we’ve been working on this from day one with various engineering companies. It is a unique collaboration whereby all involved keep the others informed and up to date. We’re learning a lot from this.” •
How Iv-Bouw can help accelerate the energy transition
Installing solar panels is the easiest way to save on energy costs, especially with the recent energy crisis. However, it is often incorrectly assumed that a roof structure, for example, due to its age, may not be strong enough to support the load of solar panels in addition to all the standard loads a roof has to bear. However, the opposite is often true: in many cases, roofs are able to bear an additional PV installation (Photovoltaic installation, in other words: solar panels) without too many structural interventions. Iv-Bouw has therefore developed an easily accessible quick scan to provide clients with greater transparency.
The age of a roof structure is partly a determining factor for the investigation.
Saving energy and costs
“With the quick scan, Iv-Bouw can add value for its clients, both in terms of costs and promoting sustainability”, says Etienne Boender, Branch Manager at Iv-Bouw in Delft and initiator of the quick scan method. The quick scan answers two main questions: ‘Is the roof structure able to support the extra load of solar panels, and if so, how much extra load?’ And: ‘which additional measures are required to install a PV installation should the roof structure be insufficient?’.
A staged approach
The quick scan is performed in four phases. This ‘staged’ approach has been set up deliberately because sometimes it is already apparent in the first stage what is and isn’t possible, which then limits the costs for the quick scan. Iv-Bouw first examines the residual load-bearing strength of a roof based on reduced load factors. Thus, the age of a roof structure is partly a determining factor for this investigation.
Next, we map out any residual strength of the roof structure based on structural analysis. This is done for the main structural bearing elements, such as main beams and columns. Therefore, the strength and potential load are calculated critically. “We examine the existing load, including the steel sheets, insulation material, roof covering, etc. These are all loads – no matter how small – that must be included in the calculation. And based on the calculated values, we can determine the remaining capacity. We do this via structural calculations”, says Etienne. Iv-Bouw has all the specialisms in-house to conduct a thorough assessment in which colleagues from E&W (buildingrelated installations) and structural engineers closely collaborate.
Next, if the former step results in enough residual strength of the main structure, we explore beyond the roof and determine which connections are present and the sufficiency thereof. Additionally, the condition of the roof sheets is examined, and we assess whether further examination is necessary.
The majority of business premises do not yet generate solar energy by covering the roof area with solar panels.
The final step is only required when the results of the second or third step show that the main structure or the secondary elements cannot withstand the additional loads. In this case, the structural measures are designed to strengthen the roof structure.
A practical example
Iv-Bouw recently conducted a quick scan on behalf of Leusderend Estate, a majestic country estate amid forests, sports fields and hiking trails, where various companies rent office space. The quick scan, in which a structural test was also performed, revealed the main supporting structure could bear the additional load of the PV installation. This concerned the steel profiles in the roofs but not the roof sheets. The roof sheets were too weak to withhold any additional load. This calculation was made in accordance with the renovation requirements of NEN8700. So, in this case, the installation supplier would need to construct a structure directly supported by the steel profiles.
Still much to gain
In recent years, the Netherlands has seen considerable growth in the number of solar panels. As a result, the Netherlands is slowly creeping towards the forefront after years of being at the bottom. But there is still much to gain, and Iv-Bouw aims to contribute by performing easily accessible quick scans.
There are currently more than 1.5 million households in the Netherlands with solar panels on the roof. This may sound like a lot, but in reality, approximately eighty percent of private roofs are not yet used in this regard. Even when it comes to business premises, the majority do not yet generate solar energy by covering the roof area with solar panels.
Client demand Etienne explains: “When renovations take place, a roof is not always seen as more than a roof over one’s head. But actually, it has much more potential.”
Iv-Bouw wants to offer help and advice with a straightforward approach to companies and property owners struggling with this uncertainty. “Until now, we’ve offered this service, but never up front. We now want to do this, show what we can achieve, and establish a standard procedure for clients.”
We don’t turn it into rocket science
Iv-Bouw has years of experience and expertise in performing quick scans. We also have in-house specialist knowledge of building structures and installations. This
knowledge is essential for determining whether roof structures can support solar panels. Etienne: “You must understand structures and have knowledge about load distribution and the associated risks of renovating existing structures.”
But he also states that a quick scan of a roof doesn’t have to be rocket science. “Roofs are generally not the most complicated of structures. So, we always begin simple, and as a quick scan progresses, it becomes more complex. To assess a roof accurately, we begin with hand calculations, which later progress into a more in-depth calculation with the help of structural software.”
The quick scan is a financially sustainable way of getting more out of a roof than is considered possible.
However, a standardised quick scan method is new, no matter how logical the necessity and demand may seem. Etienne: “It also suits Iv-Bouw, and Iv in general, to observe these opportunities in the market and pragmatically devise a solution to close the gap.”
While the energy transition and the climate goals to be energy neutral by 2050 are being accelerated, the quick scan is a financially sustainable way of getting more out of a roof than is considered possible.
“Our experience has shown that the question of whether it is possible can often be answered with ‘yes’. The quick scan enables us to determine the potential of a roof, which is often more than assumed.” •
Topview Luchtfotografie, photographer Michael Limburg
The Prins Claus Bridge: unique in appearance and operation
The Prince Claus Bridge is a steel bicycle and pedestrian bridge between Dordrecht’s Stadswerven district and the historic city centre.
During the annual Steel Construction Day, this bridge won the National Steel Construction Prize in the Infrastructure category. This article explores why this royal bridge has already earned an award to its name just one year after its official opening.
René van Zuuk Architects composed the architectural design and transformed the bridge into an architectural eye-catcher. Commissioned by the Municipality of Dordrecht, the execution was conducted by a construction consortium consisting of Dura Vermeer and Hillebrand. Engineering company Iv-Infra developed the architectural design into an integral final and implementation design.
Playing with the laws of nature.
A unique system
Princess Beatrix opened the Prince Claus Bridge in the autumn of 2021. The bridge forms an essential link in the future fast cycle route between Dordrecht’s historic centre and the Merwelanden, Papendrecht and Sliedrecht. It spans 141 metres
and consists of two approach ramps and a movable section of almost 50 metres. The unique part of the Prince Claus Bridge is that it spans the waterway diagonally: a challenge for the expansion joints during the structural design phase, whereby the margins were much tighter than with regular bridges. The bridge is hydraulically powered. The movable deck is balanced around the pivot axle with a unique system comprising a hinged counterweight pylon held upright by a pendulum.
In a nutshell: playing with the laws of nature. As a result, an impressive bridge with a never before applied movable system has become an iconic landmark for Dordrecht.
The reference design by architect René van Zuuk can rightly be referred to as ambitious.
Britte van Kortenhof of Iv-Infra participated in the project as Design Manager. One of the most challenging projects, as far as she’s concerned.
“During the elaboration of a feasible, maintainable and reliably functioning technical design, all components were intensively coordinated to
satisfy the strict design requirements. The architectural concept was binding. A beautiful bridge, but with incredibly tight margins.”
Magnificent solutions for challenging issues Iv-Infra had to work with an accuracy (tolerance) of 5 millimetres. “This made such a project quite a challenge and, above all, extremely critical. But also fun! We love to work on complex projects. We have many creative designers within Iv-Infra who can devise magnificent solutions for challenging issues.”
Everything to do with the Prince Claus Bridge revolves around its high-quality finish and flowing movements.
The reference design by architect René van Zuuk can rightly be referred to as ambitious. Firstly, because of the appearance. All pivot points and movable sections of the bridge are entirely concealed under hoods that merge with the adjacent structural components. But this initiative can also be observed on a mechanical level. The bridge opens and closes flowingly, with which the counterweight pylon moves towards the movable deck upon opening. Both reach a standstill at an angle of 85 degrees. When the Prince Claus Bridge closes, the counterweight pylon and the movable deck remain in cohesion for the first 45 degrees of closure, after which the counterweight pylon rises. Like choreography.
The movable deck, counterweight pylon and pendulum move as a single mechanism. The counterweight pylon is connected with pivot points to the main girders of the movable deck. When the movable deck begins to move, the pivot point of the counterweight pylon revolves in a circle around the main pivot points.
The pendulum holds the counterweight pylon upright and is coupled to the counterweight pylon via the upper pivot point and at the bottom to the approach ramp by another pivot point. As a result, the pendulum exerts both horizontal and vertical load on the lower pivot point.
Everything to do with the Prince Claus Bridge revolves around its high-quality finish and flowing movements. The movable sections of Dordrecht’s Wantij crossover are hinged to the fixed parts of the bridge. Upon opening and closing, the moving sections revolve around six pivot points: two on which the movable deck revolves and two with which the underside of the counterweight pylon is connected to the rear of the movable deck. Further to these is the pivot point that connects the top of the pendulum to the counterweight pylon and, finally, one that connects the pendulum to the eastern approach ramp.
Topview Luchtfotografie, photographer Michael Limburg
BRIDGE BUT WITH INCREDIBLY TIGHT MARGINS
Topview Luchtfotografie, photographer Michael Limburg
The design of these pivot points was not universal: each has a unique specific application with associated integration problems, with which the points were implemented differently. In addition, the two pivot points connecting the movable deck to the concrete chamber are fitted with self-aligning spherical roller bearings: a robust and heavy-duty type of roller bearing, a necessary measure due to the high load exerted on these pivot points.
This also applies to the pivot points that connect the counterweight pylon to the rear of the movable deck. These points almost entirely support the 300-tonne weight of the counterweight pylon and are also equipped with self-aligning spherical roller bearings.
The lower cylinder of the award-winning bridge is provided with a special coating suitable for underwater use.
The pivot point between the counterweight pylon and the pendulum is subjected to less stress, which is why a less maintenance-sensitive bearing was chosen in this design: a spherical plain bearing with a fibre-reinforced plastic liner. The fourth variant concerns the pivot point between the pendulum and the approach ramp, where a spherical plain bearing was also used due to the relatively low bearing forces. Just as with the uppermost pivot point, the ends of the axle are concealed behind removable steel covers.
High water resistance
Both hydraulic cylinders of the bridge can be seen and are therefore configured outside of the chamber. From the bridge’s eastern side, the working of the cylinders is clearly visible and can be observed during opening and closing. Should the water level of the Wantij be (incidentally) high, both the chamber floor and the cylinder feet supported by the chamber floor may become submerged. Therefore, the lower cylinder of the award-winning bridge is provided with a special coating suitable for underwater use. In addition, the pivot point on the underside is equipped with a double seal and is filled with grease. The lower cylinder pin will not be negatively impacted if the bridge becomes partially submerged for an extended period.
The architectural design combined with Iv-Infra’s technical elaboration and execution were reason enough to nominate this unique bicycle and pedestrian bridge and ultimately crown it as the winner. •
Kees-Willem Markus and Arno Willems
Data-Driven Risk-Driven Enterprise Asset Management (DREAM)
The management and maintenance of physical assets should preferably be sustainable and at a minimal cost. The greater challenge is to find an optimal balance between asset performance, risks and costs. If you cut back on maintenance costs, the performance will decrease in the long term, and the risks will increase. If you accept fewer risks, you will have to lower the performance requirements or incur more costs. As an asset manager, how do you make the right decisions that enable you to plan the most efficient maintenance measures and avoid unexpected hindrances? Our new division
Iv-Assetmanagement can help with this. Take a peek behind the scenes of Iv’s latest division and the DREAM methodology.
Director of Iv-Assetmanagement Arno Willems: “Firstly, asset management is nothing new. Even the application of strategic asset management has been under development for at least half a century. The same applies to Iv-Groep because we’ve been advising for decades on managing and maintaining our client’s assets, implicitly seeking an optimum balance in the triangle of performance, risks and costs. However, what is new, is that we can now measure the performance of assets in real-time and, based on this,
we can accurately estimate the risks and schedule the necessary maintenance on time.”
This so-called fourth industrial revolution, also known as Industry 4.0 or smart industry, was the main reason for establishing Iv-Assetmanagement. Iv provided ‘traditional’ management and maintenance advice for many years, mainly in the infrastructure sector. We are now bundling the four essential disciplines (measuring & monitoring, data science, domain knowledge and strategic asset management) to apply Industry 4.0 via one central body; Iv-Assetmanagement.
Many assets are approaching the end of their useful life.
The most significant added value for clients is that Iv-Assetmanagement has specialist knowledge of measurement technologies, risk analysis and asset management, and in-depth knowledge of the actual structures and installations. Arno: “As a result, we are better positioned than any other company to translate the data from, among other things, sensor measurements into information about the (failure) behaviour of the assets.”
As assets age, this information becomes increasingly important. Many assets – from bridges, roads and locks to industrial installations, container cranes, offshore platforms and vessels – are approaching the end of their useful life. So how should you maintain assets, and when should you intervene? Especially in times when budgets are under increasing pressure and ‘performing maintenance’ is not a popular decision from a political point of view as it costs a lot of money, and the benefit is often not immediately visible. To that end, performing maintenance too soon is undesirable, but leaving it too late can be much worse.
Imagine: if you accept more risks, what is the effect?
Infinite maintenance horizon
Arno: “Years ago, we advised the Directorate-General for Public Works and Water Management (Rijkswaterstaat) on the risk-based maintenance of dikes, dams, dunes and floating marks, so-called ‘hydraulic line objects’. Initially, we developed a method that enabled us to estimate the risks for the coming 6-year maintenance period. Based on that, we optimised the maintenance for that relatively short period. However, this approach is not optimal for the lifespan of the assets and can still lead to wrong choices or even failing assets. Moreover, the DirectorateGeneral for Public Works and Water Management proved insufficiently able to quantify the effect of turning the dials on performance, risks and costs. We, therefore, devised a risk-based method to examine and assess assets much further into the future than six years, with an infinite maintenance horizon”, he explains. “This enables us to optimise maintenance over the assets’ entire lifespan with regard to the triangle mentioned earlier.”
Multi-year maintenance planning Kees-Willem Markus is a RAMS (Reliability, Availability, Maintainability, Safety) and Asset Management Senior Consultant. He further developed the methodology with Arno for the Directorate-General for Public Works and Water Management under the name DREAM. DREAM stands for Data-Driven Risk-Driven Enterprise Asset Management. Kees-Willem explains: “DREAM is a method that cleverly combines the possible failure behaviour of structures, inspection and/or measurement results and maintenance advice with the help of an uncertainty analysis into a multi-year maintenance plan. As a result, the maintenance of assets and the required budget is predicted for the coming years, without unexpected hindrances resulting from malfunctions, necessary (unplanned) maintenance or structural failure.”
The DREAM method has been designed and developed in such a way that it also helps clients who have less affinity with figures.
This method has been worked on for years. The basis of this development is the risk matrix that was used in the past. “We played around with that”, continues Kees-Willem. “Imagine: if you accept more risks, what is the effect? DREAM originated from the idea that we increasingly collect more and better data and perform better and more complete risk analyses.”
Moreover, the DREAM method has been designed and developed in such a way that it also helps clients who have less affinity with figures. The long-term risk is indicated via colours (green, orange, red) for a range of areas and various
“WE INCREASINGLY COLLECT MORE AND BETTER DATA ”
maintenance and failure scenarios. This way, decisionmaking can be substantiated and easily optimised for various maintenance budgets.
We want to substantiate these estimates better with data and representative failure curves, for example, to bring us closer to 100% predictable maintenance.
In full development
Kees-Willem: “It is very widely applicable. We can provide insight into the inspection requirement with several rules from the maintenance. It works well, but at the same time, it is still in development as far as we’re concerned.
In an ideal scenario, we would attach some sensors to a bridge and measure the critical points, after which a risk profile containing maintenance advice would be produced automatically. This is our dot on the horizon, but we are not there yet.” Arno endorses this improvement. “For ourselves and the client, we want to substantiate these estimates better with data and representative failure curves, for example, to bring us closer to 100% predictable maintenance. This is still the biggest challenge.”
Incidentally, it is not the case that DREAM will mean that people are no longer involved; on the contrary: visual inspections are crucial in supporting the data. Kees-Willem: “Also, because measures are not generic. Not every crack is the same, and concrete cracks, for example, will always need to be sealed.”
A broad knowledge, not only in asset management but also of the different types of assets, is essential to deliver tailor-made solutions. According to Arno, this is the strength of Iv-Groep’s new division. “We are capable of collecting data with all types of monitoring technology we have, and via all our divisions, we have an exceptional understanding of interpreting deviating results. Our expertise and experience in risk analysis and asset management make for an excellent combination.” •
Safeguarding security and prosperity from the sea
Energy scarcity, sabotage of critical infrastructure, and the war in Ukraine: prosperity and security cannot be taken for granted. The turmoil we are currently observing in the world emphasises how crucial it is to guarantee prosperity, safety and energy security. Worldwide, we are seeing defence budgets slowly but surely rising, and the demand for sustainable energy has never been greater. Nevesbu’s mission is to contribute to prosperity and security with advanced maritime engineering services. But what exactly is that contribution? What are the future challenges for Nevesbu and how does this naval architect respond to these challenges? Bart van Rijssen, Director of Nevesbu, identifies the challenges in the market.
The biggest challenges
The maritime sector is of enormous strategic importance worldwide: more than 90% of the world’s trade occurs by sea. The biggest challenges in this sector are the growing need for energy generation at sea, greening sea-going vessels, and maintaining and strengthening maritime security. In other words: security on and from the water. These are interrelated challenges because skills and knowledge from the maritime sector are of added value in the offshore energy transition. For example, floating applications offer an opportunity to generate sustainable energy in deeper waters.
Nevesbu and Iv-Offshore & Energy have developed a concept for this and are participating in a Joint Industry Project (JIP) of DNV (Det Norske Veritas). This JIP aims to improve and accelerate technology development for floating offshore wind substations. Extra attention is being given to hydrodynamics: gaining insight into how export cables and topside equipment tolerate the motions of a floating structure, an area of expertise in which Nevesbu is specialised.
We make a valuable contribution to security for the Netherlands and other NATO countries.
Let us go back to ensuring security on and from the water. Nevesbu has been a dependable partner for the Ministry of Defence since 1935, from designing and integrating the most complex systems for surface ships to ultra-specialised work on submarines.
“Yes, you can certainly say we support Defence. We make a valuable contribution to security for the Netherlands and other NATO countries. Nevesbu has worked on all Dutch naval surface vessels and submarines and we have worked on many foreign
submarines and surface ships as well. We currently provide specialist knowledge for various new (non-Dutch) submarines, support foreign navies in the purchase of new submarines, design and engineer innovative systems for new naval vessels, and we advise navies on the upkeep of their vessels whereby we integrate new systems on existing vessels”, says Bart van Rijssen.
The Netherlands largely depends on trade, especially via water.
In this respect, our many years of experience in the maritime sector correlate seamlessly with the mission of keeping the Netherlands and its allies safe and prosperous. Bart: “The Netherlands largely depends on trade, especially via water. Our knowledge can help ensure our waters remain safe for navigation.”
Continuous development is necessary
The challenge in this specific market cannot be summed up in one word. Currently, partly due to the war in Ukraine, the security and protection of Dutch territory and its allies are under additional pressure. Continuous development is therefore necessary, says Bart. “At Nevesbu, we love the work when it gets really complex. That’s just in us. We distinguish ourselves in complex maritime issues, such as shock resistance and underwater acoustics. We have a young and international team of people, with an average age of just 38 years. Some colleagues have been with us for more than 40 years, and it is nice to see them passing on their knowledge to younger specialists.”
this, Nevesbu needs to grow to take on all aspects of engineering and design. “To design from A to Z, you must have sufficient capacity. From the initial concept to being ready for production’,’ says Bart. “Furthermore, you need to understand the client’s requirements and have in-house knowledge of electronics, mechanical engineering and naval architecture. We have that knowledge, and we keep it up to date.’’ The latter is partly due to the upkeep work we perform, for example, for the Walrus class; the submarine fleet that has been operational for more than 40 years.
Energy security is of increasing importance
Part of our energy security can be realised through offshore wind, and that’s where the challenges in Nevesbu’s markets converge. Safety at sea benefits trade and the economy and contributes to energy security.
Nevesbu will continue to focus on its specialisms and offer these in a broader range of services. To achieve
skills and knowledge from the maritime sector are also needed within the offshore energy transition.
Nevesbu views investing in offshore renewable energy projects as a good and logical addition to its portfolio.
Bart: “Many skills and knowledge from the maritime sector are also needed within the offshore energy transition. Knowledge of the impact of waves, motion absorption and how to limit fatigue of structures at sea. This is extremely specific knowledge that we can use in both fields. It goes together perfectly.”
Maritime security also applies to the greening of sea-going vessels. Nevesbu has extensive experience in modernising vessels and with hybrid energy systems. This experience is especially useful in reducing emissions from sea-going
vessels. In addition to striking similarities regarding specialist expertise between the maritime sector and offshore energy, there are also differences. For example, the offshore industry is developing rapidly, while the marine sector sometimes has to wait years for projects to materialise.
We work with applied technology. We’re not busy with how we can live on Mars.
Nevesbu wants and can be part of the energy transition. A project for SBM Offshore, which specialises in floating storage and production platforms, is proof of this. “This floater (floating platform) is a floating energy factory
that can be deployed in many places and has higher capabilities than most other platforms. Furthermore, it’s emission-free.”
Working with applied technology
In short: working on safe waters to support the muchneeded energy transition is part of Nevesbu’s mission. Collaborations with TNO, which conducts a great deal of research for the Ministry of Defence, also help us with our mission. “We work with applied technology. We’re not busy with how we can live on Mars; instead, we focus much closer to home. That is what makes our work tangible and versatile.” •
WE CONTRIBUTE TO SECURITY
New phase in Sofia project gets underway, also for Iv-Offshore & Energy
For more than two years, a large team of Iv-Offshore & Energy engineers have been working on one of the most challenging projects to date: the HVDC (High-Voltage Direct Current) offshore converter platform for the Sofia Offshore Wind Farm. Sofia is one of the largest projects to date in RWE Renewables’ portfolio, with a generating capacity of 1.4 Gigawatts (GW). The design phase is coming to an end, but the project is not yet finished.
On the contrary, in Indonesia, the construction of the platform is in full swing.
Indonesian island of Batam, just off the coast of Singapore.
For Iv-Offshore & Energy, the Sofia project is the largest project to date. In July 2020, Iv-Offshore & Energy signed the initial contract for the detailed design of the topside (the platform) and jacket (the foundation) with Sembcorp Marine Offshore Platforms Ltd (SMOP) in Singapore. Iv-Offshore & Energy also has another important role; the procurement of all auxiliary equipment for the platform.
It’s really just getting started now.
GE Renewable Energy Grid Solutions (GE) is supplying the HVDC equipment. As SMOP’s engineering partner, Iv-Offshore & Energy is fully responsible for the platform engineering and system integration and is also supporting Sembcorp Marine on construction engineering queries. SMOP is currently constructing the platform on the
Given the important role of Iv-Offshore & Energy in this impressive offshore project, it comes as no surprise that following completion of the engineering works, Iv-Offshore & Energy will also support the construction to assist in answering any engineering questions from constructors and partners. In concrete terms, this means that from the new year, Iv employees will also be present on location at the SMOP site in Batam.
Restricted, but even more important Project Manager Rogier Regenbogen is not yet looking back on one of the most exciting and challenging projects in the company’s history. “Our role is indeed not over yet. Actually, you could say that it’s just getting started. Our deliveries to the yard are almost complete, and since April 2022, Alex de Jong is our site representative in Batam. He will be positioned at the yard for two years on behalf of Iv-Offshore & Energy. He is our liaison between the client, construction team and other stakeholders on the SMOP yard and is also leading the Iv-Offshore & Energy site team. One of the activities of our site team is to monitor and support the yard to ensure
that our delivered goods are preserved and handled properly.”
Iv-Offshore & Energy’s role, while somewhat decreased in terms of the amount of work, still remains important. After a successfully completed engineering phase, it is now crucial that all equipment and the platform are built and installed correctly and in accordance with our delivered design. Rogier Regenbogen: “That makes it a very nice and interesting project to execute. This is the first time we are working with SMOP, and the mutual expectations were not always aligned. Thus, another aspect that has to be managed.”
Size of the platform
The HVDC platform, at the moment one of largest in the world to be commissioned, consists of six decks. In total, the platform will reach a height of approximately seventy five metres above sea level and is about forty metres wide and around one hundred metres long including the helideck. The topside will be installed on an eight-legged jacket, which will be placed on the seabed almost thirty metres below sea level. On the highest deck, the telecommunications mast of roughly twenty metres rises above the platform deck.
We are not afraid to take responsibility.
Qualitatively and quantitatively a lot What’s in store for Iv? In January 2023, additional engineers from Iv-Offshore & Energy will go to Indonesia. Then the installation work will commence and the last pieces of equipment, such as the pedestal crane and the last switchgear cabinets, will arrive at the SMOP yard. Iv-Offshore & Energy is responsible for transporting the goods to the yard in Batam. The transport from Europe to the Indonesian island takes around six weeks. “It was quite tense”, says Rogier, “to make sure all the paperwork was ready in time, the container ships booked, the containers stowed and above all: to ensure the goods arrive at the yard in the desired condition.”
To see the platform being built is really amazing.
“It is especially exciting in terms of size and weight. This HVDC platform is huge. This is the largest platform (10,000 tonnes, ed.) we have designed to date. To actually see this being built is really amazing”, adds the project manager.
Besides the sheer size of the converter platform, the complexity inside the platform was quite a challenge. Due to the large capacity of 1.4 Gigawatt, more space is simply needed to accommodate the larger HVDC and auxiliary installations. In our design, we also had to take into account the safe and easy accessibility of the installations for maintenance and inspections during operation of the platform. Not easy, but necessary to meet the high availability requirements, which required thinking beyond the boundaries.
The latter certainly applies to the cooling system. When converting alternating current to direct current, a lot of heat is generated, which must be dissipated. The installation is cooled with outside air and cooling water. In the past, we outsourced the HVAC installation. However, for the Sofia platform, Iv-Offshore & Energy designed the HVAC installation. Because we selected cooling water for the HVAC installation instead of air condensers, we could design a more compact cooling system. These are important details in a design that calls for creativity.
Energy for 1.2 million households
The platform design, which Iv-Offshore & Energy has been working on for the last two years, will increasingly become a reality in the coming months. A milestone and the start of a new phase at the same time. That Iv-Offshore & Energy is still involved is a good sign, Rogier believes. “We get a lot of responsibility and we are not afraid to accept it. In this phase, the construction yard asks a lot of questions, but because we understand the priorities, we can support our client in the best possible way.”
Following completion of the works in Batam in 2024, the Sofia HVDC platform will be shipped to the Dogger Bank to its final location, about two hundred kilometres north-east of the UK coast. The Offshore Converter Platform will be in full operation in 2026 and then be capable of powering approximately 1.2 million UK households. •
“IT IS ESPECIALLY EXCITING IN TERMS OF SIZE AND WEIGHT ” 35
Simplicity is the key to patentworthy solutions
It is the finest and most difficult challenge for every engineer or design engineer: to devise a solution to a problem or a situation that has not yet been invented. Within Iv-Consult, our specialists spend their time solving technical issues daily. But sometimes, for multiple reasons, it pays to patent innovations. Director Peter van Kerchove has seen many solutions patented and used within Iv-Consult.
problems and issues. Sometimes a solution is so unique that we decide to apply for a patent. But it is also often the case that we don’t fully realise the uniqueness of an innovation we have pioneered.”
A good solution must be simple.
Several examples of successfully patented innovations developed by Iv-Consult include a self-installing floating wind turbine at sea, a method for applying a seal lining underwater to lock gates and the simple vertical positioning of offshore structures.
Centre stage for knowledge and ingenuity
A patent can be requested to obtain the exclusive right to develop or sell a product or use an invention. Of course, such an invention (or product) may not already exist. Unlike in the past, a patent is now valid for a limited period of a maximum of twenty years. In addition to the commercial benefits, as far as Peter van Kerchove is concerned, patenting is also a great way to showcase the knowledge and ingenuity of Iv-Consult and other divisions within Iv.
“We are, in fact, inventors”, says Peter. “And sometimes we should show that off a little more”, he says. “We always work on smart solutions for often complex
The design of the sixteen lock gates of the Panama Canal, one of the most significant projects ever tackled by Iv, is an excellent example of this. Iv-Consult devised a very clever solution to simplify the maintenance of the enormous lock gates: a sealing method that enables installation and replacement in sections. Seal elements are increasingly used to prevent excessive leakage. The Panama locks are a prime example of this being necessary because of the large drop and little available water in the adjoining lake. A seal lining prevents that loss through leakage, but the length of these linings makes maintenance and replacement very expensive. Iv-Consult devised a solution whereby the seal lining is applied in sections comparable to ‘puzzle pieces’ that are then held in position through the basic laws of physics. The result is that it is no longer necessary to replace an entire lining. But instead, this can be done per ‘puzzle piece’. This solution also proved beneficial for maintaining the high operational requirements through which the Panama locks must remain in operation 99. 6 percent of the time.
This seal lining is a typical example of ‘a good solution must be simple’, but nothing is more complex than devising simple solutions. And that is often what a patent-worthy invention boils down to, as Peter now knows from experience. “Patent worthiness must involve something new, not previously invented. The advantage when it comes to devising solutions is simplicity. Regardless of whether something is patented, the greatest compliment that we as engineers can receive is that clients are amazed at how simple something can be.”
It is in us to spend a lot of time on it subconsciously.
The simplicity of a paper clip
To emphasise this, Peter often shares an example of simplicity with new colleagues and engineers; the paper clip, also once patented. “I love a solution like this because it is a sublime invention that is incredibly simple. In fact, a brilliant invention. I try to apply this way of thinking to the issues presented to us. But the best ideas often come from mulling it over in the car or while walking. It is in us to spend a lot of time on it subconsciously.”
To be clear: not every issue requires the most inventive response, and not every solution is patentable, but as far as Peter is concerned, more attention should be focussed on this. “A solution is usually only good if it corresponds to the real problem. Therefore, when we receive a request from a client, we critically examine it to ascertain whether the real issue is being queried and whether we are providing the correct response.”
Self-installing, floating wind turbine
The correct response was also found in the innovation of an inspiring self-installing, floating wind turbine. For quite some time now, Iv has been pursuing an invention that could still be introduced in the offshore wind market, a market where there is a great deal of steady development and where finding a unique and innovative system is incredibly complicated. Therefore, Iv-Consult delved deeper, literally and figuratively, and found that the innovative concept for installing a floating wind turbine, namely one that self-installs, did not yet exist. This ingenious system with tendons, floats and a ‘gravity base’ only requires tugs to tow it to its location, where it will self-install.
The moment you think ‘I’ve got it’ always gives such a buzz.
In many ways, Iv-Consult is making progress in the offshore market. A patent has also been approved for a ‘grab’ method that lifts the monopiles of oil and gas platforms out of the sea in a single hoist during decommissioning.
As far as Peter is concerned, the innovative power within Iv-Groep should be further embraced. Applying for patents, if they are innovative and add value, is an essential part of this. “Besides the advantages a patent carries, such as the head-start on our competitors and protecting the invention, it projects a very positive image. Plus, it keeps us sharp. The moment you think ‘I’ve got it’ always gives such a buzz. That’s what distinguishes us.” •
Helping the industry sector improve the water balance
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, it is possible that by 2025 two-thirds of the world’s population will live in an area where so-called ‘water stress’ prevails. For several years now, the theme of water stress has also been impacting the Netherlands, partly due to climate change. However, the industry sector can also combat water stress by creating a healthy and responsible water balance for its own processes.
Iv-Water has been studying the water balance for production processes and has observed that there is a lot to be gained in both quantity and quality. By mapping the water balance at a factory, a treatment plant or, for example, a waste processing company, insight can be gained into the water footprint, thus helping to make substantiated choices in optimising water management.
In the Netherlands, the soil is drying out due to prolonged periods of drought.
First, let us zoom in on the problem of water stress. What does it involve, and how big is the problem exactly? Water stress is basically water scarcity. In the
Netherlands, the soil is drying out due to prolonged periods of drought. Salinisation of groundwater is now also an issue and is partly due to desiccation combined with rising sea levels and soil settlement. In particular, the agricultural sector, nature, and drinking water companies are affected by this desiccation and salinisation. In addition to water availability, the ground or surface water quality is also crucial for the chosen technology for drinking water preparation. These technologies are becoming more complex and, therefore, more expensive.
Inventorise, optimise, add value
Within the industry sector, there is an increasing need for in-depth insight into the water balance.
Iv-Water determines this water balance based on a step-by-step plan using three main principles: inventory, optimisation and value creation. It starts with collecting process data within a company and performing a thorough data analysis based on existing measurements and trending data from, for example, SCADA systems and, where necessary, through the placement of additional measurements. This data analysis provides insight into the quantity and quality of the intake water and discarded water, including the actual required quality and quantity for each part of the process.
Subsequently, the opportunities and possibilities for optimisation of all business processes are mapped. Several issues are associated, partly depending on the client’s wishes and requirements but also from the perspective of legislation and regulations (including permits). These issues include possibilities for optimising water reuse, using and treating recirculated water under the correct specification and optimising transporting water. In other words, closing cycles for reuse. But also accomplishing sustainability ambitions or increasing the availability of the required water and thus of the primary process.
The industry sector is still missing opportunities.
Finally, creating added value to the water is examined. Not only through reuse but also through the use of residual products, ultimately lowering the water footprint and achieving savings on, among other things, energy consumption and/or the use of chemicals. In short, the ‘total cost of ownership’.
a result, a reduction in drinking water intake could be achieved in many cases.”
Paul refers to the fact that drinking water, which was even scarce in the Netherlands for a while in the warm and dry summer of 2022, is relatively cheap for companies to purchase, even if they do not use it as drinking water.
Partly because of this, the water balance is sometimes off-balance. “People need to become more aware of the importance of the value of water. One possibility is to increase the price, but the social value can also play a role by increasing the sustainability ambitions in which the industry sector can make a significant contribution.”
Broad knowledge and approach
Now that the Netherlands is also increasingly dealing with water stress, the urgency to use our water more economically is growing. Until recently it was taken for granted that sufficient (high-quality) water was available, but this is no longer a certainty. Paul Kloet, Deputy Director of Iv-Water, feels the industry sector has an excellent opportunity to improve its water balance significantly. “Even though the industry sector is making great strides, opportunities are still being missed. For example, when it comes to the circularity of water, the reuse of used water streams whether or not by applying (treatment) technologies. These technologies allow us to use water efficiently, with the correct specification. As
The positive effects of an optimised water balance are clear: less water wastage, reuse of water, and thus a reduction in drinking water intake, which directly contributes to reducing our water stress. In addition, this balance can provide insight into the possible reuse of (waste) substances from the treated water. However, establishing such a water balance is only a start. Iv-Water has the broad in-house knowledge to provide clarity and insight into that balance and implement or propose optimisations. In the end, specialisms within other divisions are also needed to achieve improved water management.
“It’s all about bundling different technologies, such as those that use filtration, biology, reverse osmosis and polishing”, says Paul. “Ultimately, we want to achieve an integral design in which we deploy for example RAMS, cost and contract experts alongside our process technologists, civil engineers, mechanical engineers and EIA engineers (Electrical, Instrumentation and
Automation). This broad approach which Iv has chosen has many advantages. It concerns a choice in not only process technology but also an approach to aspects such as maintainability, availability, sustainability (such as energy consumption and minimal CO2 emissions) and the necessary space requirements.”
If awareness increases, we can achieve a lot.
Optimising the water balance and tackling scarcity, therefore, requires an integral approach but also an approach that is fit for the long term. The optimisation contributes to limiting water use and the futureproofing of (existing) installations of (water) companies. Future-proofness must be guaranteed, and sufficient surface and groundwater are thereby essential.
Establishing a water balance based on our step-bystep plan not only provides insight. As far as Paul Kloet is concerned, it is more necessary than ever to deal with water more sustainably. But, of course, it helps if companies can also derive economic benefits in addition to sustainability aspects. Paul: “We want to help create awareness of the value of water. If that increases, we can achieve a lot.”
Iv-Water has now successfully deployed the stepby-step plan for the water balance, including the development of solutions, in various markets within the industry sector, such as food, chemical industry and waste processing. •
Initiation ► Growth ambitions ► Water stress ► Legislation ► End-of-life ► Sustainability goals INVENTOR I S E ADDVALUE OPTIMISE
Cost control ► CAPEX/OPEX ► Return on investment Sustainability ► Reduce water footprint (intake & discharge) ► Environment ► Reputation Establish water balance ► Collect process data ► Quantitative ► Qualitative ► Data analysis Integral approach ► Water and energy consumption ► Water quality ► Operational reliability ► BREF/BBT
Engineers with Passion for Technology
Iv-Groep is a globally operating multidisciplinary engineering company. Since 1949, Iv has been devising technical solutions for projects of any size and complexity within the following sectors: Industry, Infrastructure & Traffic, Buidings & Installations, Handling, Maritime, Offshore & Energy and Water. No challenge is too complicated for us. We are a team of specialists with a genuine passion for our specialisms: with our knowledge of technology, we can achieve the most for our customer.