Vattenfall and TenneT have joined forces to assess the technical feasibility, regulatory challenges and the benefits of running an interconnector between a substation in the designated offshore wind area IJmuiden Ver in Dutch waters to one of Vattenfall’s substations in UK waters.
The concept of connecting offshore wind transmission infrastructure with an interconnector is known by the partners as WindConnector.
By running a high voltage cable between two planned offshore substations, UK and Dutch electricity markets would be further interconnected, enabling more power to be traded between these two markets through the use of the wind transmission infrastructure. By making multiple use of transmission assets that are already planned, the additional investments are much less than what would be needed for a conventional interconnector between the two countries, according to the partners.
“The infrastructure needed to support offshore wind is a major capital investment. Anything we can do to optimise our assets with a smart project like WindConnector is good for a competitive, low cost, fossil-free offshore wind industry and great news for consumers. Partnering with TenneT means the expertise on both sides will deliver a thorough job in assessing the feasibility of WindConnector,” Vattenfall’s Gunnar Groebler, Senior Vice-President Wind, said.
Vattenfall and TenneT both signed an MoU which sets out the basis of cooperation to complete the WindConnector study. Results are expected to be published later in 2018.
TenneT has also recently signed a Letter of Intent with Germany’s innogy to explore the benefits and challenges of establishing offshore wind cross-border interconnectors across the North Sea.