The offshore industry is constantly evolving and with the global energy transition new challenges arise. Wind turbines are built larger and the cargo that needs to be transferred gets heavier. When the requirements in offshore operations change, Ampelmann is sure to present new, safe and efficient solutions. Ampelmann’s innovation department brings those new solutions to the market.
Otto Kooy is a concept engineer, and together with five others, he makes up a crucial team within Innovations. Whenever a new product idea gets through its feasibility stage, a small team of concept engineers turn it into a product concept. A concept is finished and ready to be handed over to basic and design, where all major design decisions are made and the global functionalities and structural integrity is verified by calculations. In other words, it is ready for prototyping and that is always exciting.
“Seeing a product made which started as a sketch remains incredibly rewarding every time,” Otto says.
Whenever a concept enters the prototyping phase, one concept engineer becomes a member of the basic detail team as a “spiritual farther” for that product. As a concept engineer and basic detail team member, Otto has made sure that the further technical development of the E5000, one of Ampelmann's latest additions to its fleet, adheres to the design and product philosophy and no knowledge gets lost. The basic and detail team is now getting it ready for work offshore.
“While we test the prototype, unexpected obstacles often arise that we then have to solve,” Otto says. “Some of them only become clear when the physical product is in front of us.” Together with his colleagues from different departments, Otto takes on these challenges to make sure the final product lives up to the highest standards.
The E5000 has recently been assembled and has gone through the process of basic and detailing in which Ampelmann engineers tackle final challenges and make sure the system can do everything it is supposed to do. It is specifically designed to safely and efficiently transfer heavier cargo up to 5 tonnes. Within one minute, the system can be re-configured from cargo to people transfer mode.
Otto and the team have been testing the system and are currently making the final preparations to make the system ready for offshore operations. The E5000 is already creating new opportunities in the offshore industry.
As a lead engineer, Otto often visits Ampelmann’s production hall to check in on the assembly process. “It might not be the first thing that comes to mind when people think of the job of an engineer, but we work together with a lot of people from different fields,” he says. “And I truly enjoy this social aspect of the job. I learn a lot from my colleagues about their perspectives and experiences.” The expertise of others in the company as well as insights from end users add a lot of value to the design of a new system.
Working together as one team is part of Ampelmann’s company culture and for that reason, the company maintains an open structure of which Otto benefits. “For me, it is really easy to stop by the production hall and I find that very valuable” he says. “It helps us improve the systems we build in many areas and ensure we deliver the right solutions to our clients.”
That is what it is all about for Otto and the Innovations department. “We strive to innovate and build new valuable solutions,” he says. “It is our goal to keep creating opportunities for our clients and for ourselves.”