With the help of the California-headquartered Moffatt & Nichol, the Danish seaport has developed a digital twin, thanks to which Esbjerg will be able to handle 4.5GW of offshore wind components by 2025.
"This computer program is fed huge amounts of data, enabling it to analyse all port processes related to the shipping of offshore wind installations, using a 1:1 simulation of the port. Everything from storage locations of wind components and space requirements to the impact of high tide and much more," the Port of Esbjerg explained in a press release.
Dennis Jul Pedersen, the seaport's CEO, underlined, "Working with the digital twin is a gamechanger. We can make much better decisions using that tool. It means that we can triple our capacity at Port Esbjerg without expanding by a single square metre."
He furthered, "We are now the first port in the world to have a digital twin for offshore wind. However, it could play a huge role in the deployment of wind installations across the whole of Europe in the coming years. There is a lack of space at most wind ports in Europe, so we need to pull the ports out of our spreadsheets and create more digital twins instead."
Moffatt & Nichol's Marine Structure Engineer, Joshua Singer, who was the Project Manager on the development of Esbjerg's digital twin, also commented, "It is a great achievement that we've accomplished together, and one that we can definitely use here in the United States and elsewhere in Europe. The number of offshore wind installations we can push through in the future is truly impressive."
He also observed, "The ability to digitally develop the port and physically see the project happening gives you the opportunity to identify issues and efficiencies before any significant capital investments are made, and that's a hugely powerful tool for the offshore wind industry."
Esbjerg's capacity will steadily increase from 1.5 to 4.5GW/year by 2025 when the required changes are completed (a.o., rebuilding of various access roads). "[...] There is no reason to think we'll stop at 4.5GW, and the same goes for increasing capacity in the rest of Europe. And that's before we even start expanding the ports," Jul Pedersen said in this regard.
Photo: Port of Esbjerg