WIND FARM UPDATE
Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm
Work has started in Norfolk on the onshore connection for the 402MW Dudgeon offshore wind farm with the national grid. The wind farm, located 20 miles off the coast of Cromer in North Norfolk in water depths of 18-25m is a project by Norwegian companies Statoil (35%) and Statkraft (30%), and Abu Dhabi’s renewable energy company, Masdar(35%).
The onshore connection consists of 2 underground cables and 2 substations. Carillion plc was contracted for the work on the underground cables with a length of 47km which will run from Weybourne on the North Norfolk coast to the substations in Necton, near Swaffham. The work, which includes building a 40m trench, is expected to be completed by late 2015/early 2016.
The 2 substations are built by 2 different companies. Siemens Transmission and Distribution Limited will build one into which the 2 underground cables will be connected, while National Grid will be constructing and commissioning its own new facility alongside. Construction work on the 2 substations is expected to be completed by April 2016, but will be followed by testing and commissioning that will last until November 2016.
Dudgeon is planned to start producing its first power in the first quarter of 2017 and full commissioning by the end of 2017 after which 67 Siemens 6MW turbines will be generating enough power to supply around 410,000 households annually.
Hornsea Project One
DONG Energy acquired full ownership of the UK offshore wind development Hornsea Project One from its joint venture partner SMart Wind, a 50/50 joint venture between Mainstream Renewable Power and Siemens Financial Services. DONG Energy went into the joint venture in 2011 with an option to buy the remaining 66.66% ownership interest once development consent was received from the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, which took place in December last year.
Hornsea Project One is located 120km off the Yorkshire coast covering an area of approximately 407km2. It is the first development proposed within the Hornsea Zone to receive development consent. It will consist of up to 3 wind farms with a possible 1.2GW of combined capacity, which could provide green energy to around 800,000 households. It is the first gigawatt wind farm to be developed, making it the world’s largest offshore wind farm once completed. The project is scheduled to commence operation by 2020 subjected to final investment decision.
DONG Energy awarded a contract for the engineering design services for the 3 offshore substations to UK engineering company Atkins. Ramboll was awarded the contract for the design of a reactive compensation substation which will be placed midway along the AC export cable route, at a water depth of 23m, in order to reduce powerloss in the export cables. It will be a first of its kind trial as up to now power loss has been mitigated by using HVDC platforms and using DC power in the export cable. The project is likely to have a steel jacket and top side but this has not been formally decided. The project will run until November 201 5.
In February a milestone was reached at E.ON’s 219MW Humber Gateway wind farm when the first electricity was produced. At the time of writing the last of the 73 MHI-Vestas V11 2-3MW turbines are being installed. This marks the last phase of the construction activities as all cables and the substation are already installed.
The Humber Gateway wind farm is located around 8km offshore from Easington, off East Yorkshire’s Holderness Coast. Full commissioning is expected by mid-summer. From then on the wind farm will be able of powering around 170,000 households with green energy each year.
In February, E.ON launched a £2m community fund for the wind farm with the aim to benefit local communities in the East Riding of Yorkshire and Grimsby, manly in the areas of improving rural transport in South Holderness; supporting the development of a new apprenticeship programme in North East Lincolnshire; funding for a new visitor centre for the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust; and a community support fund. Local groups, voluntary organisations and registered charities can apply for this fund.
Kentish Flats Extension
Vattenfall’s 49.5MW Kentish Flats Extension is nearing completion the preparations for the offshore installation of the foundations and cables are in progress. First installation of the foundations and turbines will start in the first week of May. The installation will be performed by Belgian contractor GeoSea, using their installation vessel Neptune and is expected to be completed by August. The monopiles are produced by Smulders Projects in Belgium.
The Kentish Flats Extension is located on the southern side of the Outer Thames Estuary adjacent to the west and southern side of Kentish Flats Offshore Wind Farm and covers an area of around 7.8km2. It will have 15 Vestas V112-3.3 MW turbines installed. Completion of the wind farm is planned for then end of this year. When fully operational Kentish Flats Extension will provide up to 35,000 households with green energy.