Logistics and load-out sequencing of wind turbine generator components using improved stastical analysis.

James Russell
Houlder, London, UK



One of the key challenges faced by windfarm installation teams, particular working offshore, is predicting the length of time taken to load out generator components and ensure their timely, effective transit. Some variables are relatively straight forward and easily defined. Component sizes, weights and manoeuvrability are known and fixed, for example. Others, such as weather, are more complex and unpredictable.


James Russell, Senior Naval Architect at Houlder has devised new specialist statistical modelling software that tackles the issue. It highlights the use of vessels, handling equipment, land transport and personnel in a time domain sequence that allows variables to be tested and assumptions validated to a higher degree of accuracy than previously considered. This means operators, contractors and regulators rely on lower tolerances and estimates when planning their logistics and loading plans.


Key to the success is the adoption of hydrodynamic and environmental analysis. The model references vessel and crew performances directly related to wind, wave and other environmental conditions. It allows for storms and other extremes.


In this paper, Houlder’s Senior Naval Architect will share the methodology and principals used to derive the model, the lessons learned through its development and the range of likely applications.



James Russell combined a deep understanding of hydrodynamics, metocean data, weather and environmental impact with statistical and mathematical modelling and software coding.


Using Python programming language, James created a logical, coherent and robust tool which to load the variants associated with offshore wind component load out and logisitics. This was developed iteratively and in conjunction with subject matter experts who brought practical and hands-on experience and expertise to the project.


The modelling was then thoroughly tested and, at present, is awaiting final validation before being launched to market.


The results of the programme are a straight forward, easy to use software tool that allows for better prediction of load out of components and logisitics during the planning of offshore windfarm construction.


Increasing the accuracey of load out and logitistics modelling is possible using advanced stastical modelling and a deep understanding of vessel operations, naval architecture and the marine environment.  


The paper will be of interest to those planning future windfarm construction projects.

Learnings include;

What works well and what could be improved in logisitcs modelling?

What variables be taken into account in modelling?

How does a modeller take into account wind, wave, storm and other environmental factors?

How can mathematical and stastical modelling help?

What results are possible?

The paper will enable delegates to better predict their load out and logisitcs requirements during the planning of offshore windfarm construction projects.