TÜV SÜD Expands its Offshore Wind Power Capacities (Germany)

Alpha Ventus, the first German offshore wind farm, launched operations in 2010. In the future, offshore wind power will play an increasingly important role, not only in Germany but across the world. TÜV SÜD has stepped up its activities in this sector by establishing an Offshore Windenergydepartment. The team, headed by Alexander Heitmann and Malte Lossin, launched operations in Hamburg on 1 January 2011.

Manufacturers, installers and operators of wind turbines have the wind behind them. In early 2010, wind power capacity added up to 25,777 MW in Germany alone, and totalled 158,000 MW throughout the world. In the future, offshore wind parks can make a rising contribution to energy provision. To date, the total installed capacity of offshore wind farms in Europe adds up to around 2,000 MW. According to estimates by the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA), this output could rise to up to 40,000 MW by 2020.

“The expansion of offshore wind power offers significant advantages”, notes Alexander Heitmann, head of the new Offshore Windenergy department at TÜV SÜD Industrie Service GmbH. “Off the coast, wind speeds are stronger and more consistent, offering roughly 40 per cent higher energy yield compared to sites on land.” However, the realization of offshore wind farms also means mastering major technical challenges. “The key difficulties include very deep water and the combined effects of extreme wind, high waves and the salt content of the water and the air”, explains Heitmann. “Quality assurance throughout the entire project or important individual phases of the project is critical for the profitable operation of offshore wind farms.”

The offshore expert and his team support planners, installation companies, investors and operators of offshore wind farms. Their services include certification of offshore wind farms, technical testing of offshore structures, preparation of risk assessments, the development or monitoring of occupational health and safety programmes and total quality assurance during the construction of offshore projects. The Offshore Windenergy department also focuses on factory inspection and quality control during production of all components. This also includes cross-interface quality assurance regarding the interaction between individual components and/or design and manufacturing. The TÜV SÜD experts also provide periodic inspection of the installed wind turbines throughout their service life.

The German Maritime and Hydrographic Agency (Bundesamt für Seeschifffahrt und Hydrographie) has already accredited TÜV SÜD for the certification of offshore wind farms. The establishment of the Offshore Windenergy department is another milestone for the international provider of testing and certification services in its development and expansion of client-focused services. By taking over as head of the new department, Alexander Heitmann (31) faces up to new challenges. Following his studies at the Zittau/Görlitz university of applied sciences, the offshore expert started his career with TÜV Nord in the certification of wind power stations. Between 2008 and 2010, Heitmann held various functions at SGS Germany GmbH including project management of offshore wind-power projects, business development in Asia and management of the competence centres for wind and solar power.

The second new face in TÜV SÜD’s offshore team is Malte Lossin (38), the technical manager and deputy head of the Offshore Windenergy department. Lossin, like Heitmann, is a recognized offshore wind power expert. Following his studies at the Hamburg-Harburg University of Technology (Technischen Universität Hamburg-Harburg, TUUH) the engineering graduate worked for Germanischer Lloyd Industrial Services GmbH as expert for the certification of towers and foundations of onshore and offshore wind turbines between 2002 and 2008. In addition, he was involved in a host of offshore projects as the expert responsible for corrosion protection. In 2009 and 2010 Lossin took over the responsibility for implementing the certification of various offshore projects, and played a critical role in building up this sector at SGS Germany GmbH.

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Source: tuev-sued, January 13, 2011

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