The Sandbank offshore wind farm, located in the North Sea, 90km west of German island of Sylt, has fed the first power to the German grid.
The 72 wind turbines will be put into operation successively, with the entire wind farm expected to be on the network in the spring of 2017.
The first wind turbine was installed at the end of July and a total of 21 wind turbines have been installed since then.
During the commissioning of the wind turbines, a combined hotel and transfer vessel Acergy Viking is being used. By using this modified type of ship, the project expects a significant three-month gain of time compared to the original planning. The “walk-to-work” vessel features a special gangway system which enables the commissioning teams to climb onto the wind turbines directly.
The new concept also enables for work with enhanced safety standards and to be carried out 24 hours per day. This concept is used in German North Sea for the first time with the commissioning of the Sandbank wind turbines.
Hergen Stolle, responsible package manager for wind turbines at Vattenfall, said: “The commissioning of the first wind turbines underlines the fact that it is possible to start with the generation of electricity shortly after the erection phase. It proves that offshore technology is becoming more and mature. And it also shows that the co-operation between all project partners works very well.”
Christian Moldan, Head of Offshore Wind Projects at Stadtwerke München (SWM), said: “The according-to-plan- running erection phase of our project Sandbank is a good proof point for the fact, that the offshore business makes now profitable use of the experiences already made in previous projects. This includes Vattenfall and Stadtwerke München. We were able to transfer the know-how from the “sister project” DaTysk to Sandbank and thus to carry on with our successful co-operation.”
When the wind farm is in full operation, the offshore substation, which was installed in May, will collect the wind energy from all 72 turbines, transform it from an AC voltage of 33 kilovolts (kV) to 155 kV, and deliver it to a converter station, from where the energy will be transported as DC over a distance of 165 kilometres to the landing point in Büsum, Schleswig-Holstein.