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Sea Puffin SES Daughter Craft

The 15 meter Sea Puffin Daughter Craft offers the same wave height performance as a 20 meter crew transfer vessel, with less than half the fuel oil consumption.

The vessel's great performances are made possible by the ship type: Surface Effect Ship (SES), also known as air cushioned catamaran or side hulled hovercraft. She has two side hulls like a catamaran, but has flexible rubber sealing fore and aft between the hulls. Fans blow air into this air cushion between the hulls and rubber seals, and partly lifts the vessel up and out of the water.

This provides reduced contact with the water, and therefore allows for low fuel oil consumption. The air cushion pressure is controlled by valves. These are also used for motion damping and especially while accessing offshore structures. Using this motion damping, the Sea Puffin can access offshore wind turbines in wave heights as if she had been a significantly larger vessel. The first of class, Sea Puffin 1, has proven safe turbine access in up to 1.75m significant wave height.

The Sea Puffin is available as single-hook Daughter Craft or near-shore cost-effective Crew Transfer Vessel.

Ship designer ESNA and ship owner WindPartner have a long-term cooperation agreement for the Sea Puffin, with the ambition to build a series of this vessel type over the next few years. ESNA is designer and supplier of the air cushion systems, while WindPartner is vessel owner.

Sea Puffin vessels, both as daughter craft and crew transfer vessels, can be offered for lease, sale or a combination thereof. She can also be leased to short-term projects, with or without davit systems.

Typical Main Vessel Specification

The vessels can be adapted to specific operator requirements.
For the first build, Sea Puffin 1, detailed information can be found in vessel review in the Workboat World magazine. The Sea Puffin 1 was by same magazine awarded The best Offshore Support Vessel - Wind Farm Service Vessel for 2018


Type of vessel:
 Surface Effect Ship Daughter Craft
 Surface Effect Ship Crew Transfer Vessel
Classification: BV | ✠ HULL ● MACH,
Light Ship - Fast passenger vessel, Sea area 2 

Hull material: Aluminium alloy
Length: 15-16 m (<15m rule length)
Beam: 5.6 m
Draft: 1.4 m (off cushion), 0.5 m (on cushion)
Payload: 2 ton
Forward cargo deck: Up to 15 m2
Passengers: 9-12
Propulsion: Water jets
Main engines: 2 x 260 kW

Cruising speed: 20-25 knots
Fuel consumption: 150 l/hour at 100% engine power
Operational wave height for safe turbine access:
 Up to 1.8 m significant wave height (Hs)
 1.5 m Hs for generally all conditions 

As single hook Daughter Craft or Crew Transfer Vessel (CTV)
As CTV the payload can be increased
Can be supplied complete with davit system
Lease, with or without crew, and purchase options
Custom painting and interior.


ESNA is the inventor and designer of the Sea Puffin SES Daughter Craft.
The vessels also include ESNA's state-of-the-art air cushion motion damping systems. With this system the captain can govern the vessel's motions by an intuitive touch screen.

About ESNA
ESNA is an independent ship design company for high-performance vessels. We specialize on air cushioned catamaran/Surface Effect Ships (SES), where we have unique world-leading competence. Our strategy is to complement yards with design packages and the special air cushion systems and equipment, allowing any yard to build safe, cost efficient and reliable Surface Effect Ships.


WindPartner is the owner and operator of the world's first high-performance ESNA SES daughter craft, the Sea Puffin 1. She went into operation in July 2018, and has demonstrated both very low fuel consumption and unique high wave height for turbine access.
WindPartner and ESNA have a long-term cooperation agreement for the Sea Puffin, with the ambition to build a series of this vessel type over the next few years.

About WindPartner 
WindPartner AS is an independent service and package solutions provider to the offshore wind industry, with main business idea to build, own and operate new and right-performance DC/CTV by use of SES technology with optimum efficiency and workability compared to both existing standard DC’s and CTV’s. WindPartner has a flexible business model for the Sea Puffin, ranging from lease/time charter (preferred), purchase/sale and combinations of these.

The idea of the Sea Puffin was conceived by ESNA on a roadtrip to Denmark in 2015

Challenged by a potential client, the idea was to apply SES technology to a daughter craft application. The SES daughter craft should operate from a mothership inside a wind farm in much larger wave heights than currently available daughter crafts. The mothership could use a walk-to-work system and move slowly between the wind turbines, while the Sea Puffin would efficiently distribute the technicians to the other wind turbines.

Initially supported by Innovation Norway, the Regional Research Council Agder and Sørlandet Knowledge Foundation, ESNA joined forces with service provider WindPartner in 2016 and started to detail the design. The Carbon Trust's Offshore Wind Accelerator also supported the development from 2016. ENOVA further supported the project into realization as WindPartner in 2017 ordered the first vessel built at Esbjerg Shipyard in Denmark. The Summer 2018 the first vessel, Sea Puffin 1, entered into successful trials at Vattenfall’s Horns Rev 1 and Ørsted’s Horns Rev 2 wind farms. 

The Sea Puffin 1 has successfully demonstrated all expected performances, including turbine access in 1.75m Hs and average fuel consumption of less than 100 l/hr for a daily operation.

The Sea Puffin 1 was realized with support by:


Phone: +47 99 45 24 08