BLUE Piling Technology
BLUE Piling Technology (patented) is a revolutionary new technology for driving large piles offshore. The technology breaks with the tradition of using larger and larger impact hammers to drive piles offshore but instead utilizes what is abundantly available offshore... water! The technology creates the pile driving energy with a combustion, thereby accelerating a large column of water. The pile driving cycle is shown schematically in the movie underneath.
Instead of using a steel ram that hits the pile, BLUE Piling Technology uses the combustion of a gas mixture under a water column to create a pressure increase. The pressure accelerates the water upwards and causes a downward force pushing the pile into the soil. The water column then falls back again, delivering a second blow. The exhaust gases are released and the cycle is repeated. This is illustrated in more detail below.
The image shows the operating cycle of a BLUE hammer in a cut-through. The operation is divided in six steps:
- System at rest and gas being fed into the combustion chamber.
- Gas combustion creates first blow while water is forced out of combustion chamber.
- Combustion continues while water column keeps moving upwards.
- Water column continues to rise until it reaches its highest point.
- Water column falls back again and delivers second blow.
- Exhaust gases released through exhaust valve.
Low noise levels
Noise measurements performed by TNO on a test setup show very low underwater noise levels. Scaling these values to regular offshore conditions and hammer sizes indicates that BLUE Piling Technology will be able to comply with the very strict German offshore noise regulation without requiring noise mitigation.
Lower fatigue levels
The long blow duration results in more pile set per blow. Combined with very low tensile forces this results in a significant decrease of the pile fatigue during installation.
BLUE Piling Technology can be used just like a conventional pile driver, on jacket (pin)piles as well as (XL) monopiles.
The technology is very well scalable, extending the range of piled foundations to larger turbines and into deeper waters.
Concrete pile driving
The very long blow duration (>100 ms) results in very low tensile stresses in the material. This will allow the offshore driving of large reinforced concrete piles, which could result in enormous savings for offshore foundations.
Fistuca is currently developing and testing this technology to bring it onto the market. If you want to be updated on the progress of this development, please subscribe to our newsletter.
Download our latest flyer in pdf format here for more information.