Offshore industry heads to Maritime Museum Rotterdam

Frots Loomeijer, General Director of the Maritime Museum; Image source: Maritime Museum; Photo by: Mark Kuijpers

Over 45 companies in the shipping and offshore maritime sector are among those who have contributed to the funding for the first ever exhibition in the Netherlands dedicated to the offshore sector, to be housed at The Maritime Museum Rotterdam for the next seven years, named the Offshore Experience.

Maritime Museum said on Friday that the Offshore Experience, opening in mid-December, will provide visitors an overview of the search for oil, gas, wind energy, and renewables at sea.

Frits Loomeijer, General Director of the Maritime Museum, said: “As the worldwide transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy continues apace, energy assumes increasing importance for the economy and essential for everyday living.

“A lot of the energy comes from oil, gas or wind and is obtained offshore at sea. Dutch companies are in demand throughout the world for the expertise they can bring to complex high-tech offshore projects in the most dynamic conditions. After all, just how do you construct a wind turbine at sea? How do you position a 30,000-ton platform on the seabed, accurate to the centimeter? And how do you prevent gas leaks at 3 km depth?

“In a world where everyone has an opinion on energy, the Maritime Museum is offering its visitors a unique experience around energy production at sea, both now and in the future.”

Work at sea

Visitors of the Offshore Experience will be able to see what it is like to work at sea, even 3 km below the surface.

People of all ages will be wearing a safety vest and helmet and see what it is like to be on an offshore construction in the middle of the sea with a 360° film projection adding to the experience. Ships come and go and helicopters land. Models of the newest and most advanced offshore ships will demonstrate their capabilities.

Offshore employees will offer a glimpse into their lives at sea, and simulated presentations will enable visitors to experience for themselves how drillers, crane drivers, wind turbine specialists and helicopter pilots undertake their demanding tasks on the open sea, in a constant battle with the elements.

A lift will take visitors below the surface to a depth of 3 km. The adventure ends in the future, as visitors vote for the best sustainable idea for producing energy at sea.

The Museum is also carrying out extensive research into the history of the offshore sector in collaboration with the Erasmus University and setting up an innovative course regarding technology education and project-funding.

Strong support from the commercial sector

Over 45 companies from the offshore sector, plus a large number of other organizations, are financing two-thirds of the project, as well as contributing knowledge and items for the collection.

Erwin Kooij, CEO of international energy logistics specialist Peterson Offshore Group, said: “We are proud of our sector, and I think it’s time to show that to everyone.”

Jan-Pieter Klaver, CEO of offshore oil & gas industry service provider Heerema Marine Contractors, added: “The Offshore Experience is a unique opportunity, a challenging way of getting young people to be enthusiastic about technology.”

The Offshore Experience can also be programmed as an educational location for primary, secondary and vocational education. The exhibition is the basis of a new technology education program in the museum which is in line with the National Technology Pact 2020.

This is an agreement under which the Netherlands government and social partners are setting out a long-term approach for increasing the numbers of technically skilled professionals.

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