ISLE of Wight firm Wight Shipyard — one of the country's leading aluminium shipbuilders — has been contracted to build the world’s first hybrid crew transfer vessel by CWind, serving the Borssele 1 and 2 offshore windfarms off the Dutch coast.

Chief executive Peter Morton said: "We have built a reputation in the fast ferry arena and commercial marine sector.

"But this a world first, building a hybrid surface effect ship (SES) for crew transfer.

"Building greener vessels has been an integral focus for some time now, so we are well placed to lead this step change."

Wight Shipyard will manage the build project from its development stage right through to delivery.

The new vessel has been described as a game-changer for the industry because of its ability to handle 2m wave height during technician transfer in heavy seas.

At the same time, it will decrease fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

The hybrid SES propulsion engine will deliver sprint speed and significant fuel savings.

CWind's director of engineering, Martyn Drye, said: “We embarked on the design of this revolutionary project last year, which utilises new technology to meet industry drivers for improved performance and reductions in carbon emissions.

"We’re proud to be delivering a concept which is at the forefront of crew transfer vessel innovation and look forward to working with Wight Shipyard over the coming months for the build of this vessel.

"They have been great to work with and have embraced the new technology for this vessel."

The vessel has been developed in partnership with the operator CWind and ESNA, a ship design company based in Norway.

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