Pioneering Spirit Installs HKZ Alpha Topside – Gallery

The topside of the Hollandse Kust (zuid) Alpha (HKZ Alpha) offshore substation has been installed on its jacket foundation in the Dutch North Sea, some 20 kilometres off the coast of The Hague.


HKZ Alpha is one of the two 700 MW offshore substations that TenneT ordered at Petrofac and that will connect the 1.5 GW Hollandse Kust Zuid offshore wind farm to the Dutch grid.

Marco Kuijpers, Director of Tennet’s Dirrector Offshore Projects, said: ”With the installation of the Alpha topside, the Offshore Grid that TenneT is realizing in the North Sea is increasingly taking shape. Hollandse Kust (zuid) Alpha is the first connection from an offshore wind farm to the Maasvlakte, with a capacity of 700 MW. Wind energy plays a crucial role in the energy transition, also in industry, and I am proud that TenneT can contribute to a sustainable future in this way.”

Petrofac has been working on the fabrication of the two High Voltage Alternating Current (HVAC) transformer stations – HKZ Alpha and HKZ Beta – at the Drydocks World yard in Dubai since last year.

Heavy lift and transport specialist Mammoet took care of the weighing and loading of the 3,830-ton Alpha topside on the transport vessel Tai An Kou in mid-November.

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Tai An Kou then sailed from Dubai to the Alexiahaven on the Maasvlakte, Rotterdam, where it arrived on Tuesday, 21 December, TenneT said.

In Alexiahaven, the HKZ Alpha topside was loaded from Tai An Kou onto the multifunctional platform installation and removal vessel, Pioneering Spirit, by Allseas.

After transporting the topside and completing the preparatory work, Pioneering Spirit accurately placed the structure on its jacket, TenneT Said.

”It’s great to be involved in an energy project of such strategic importance to the Netherlands,” said Edward Heerema, President and CEO of Allseas.

”Pioneering Spirit has made a name for itself in recent years with pioneering elevators in the oil and gas industry. The successful installation of the Alpha topside demonstrates the ship’s versatility and our added value in the energy transition.”

The HKZ Beta topside is expected to follow in the first quarter of next year, TenneT said.

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Once fully operational in 2023, the Hollandse Kust Zuid wind farm will become the largest operating offshore wind farm in the world. The subsidy-free wind farm will generate enough electricity to meet the annual needs of more than two million households.

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Sami Iskander, Petrofac Group Chief Executive, said: ”The secure installation of the Alpha topside is a significant milestone in the delivery of this important energy transition project. Everyone involved can be proud of this achievement. Petrofac has made its mark in offshore wind energy over the past decade. This is reflected in the competence of our engineers and the quality of our products. We are working closely with our partners on the delivery of the Beta topside and a successful grid connection.”