Aibel Starts Building Hornsea Three Offshore Substations

Construction activities on the two offshore substations for the Hornsea Three offshore wind farm in the UK have kicked off at Aibel’s yard in Thailand.

Monks blessed the cutting of the first steel for Hornsea Three substations; Photo source: Aibel

Ørsted, the developer of Hornsea Three, signed an EPCI contract with partners Aibel and Hitachi Energy for the two platforms in 2022.

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Under the contract, Hitachi Energy will supply two HVDC Light® converter systems, while Aibel will deliver two HVDC offshore converter platforms. The platform is based on Hitachi Energy’s modular HVDC system including its advanced control and protection system, MACH™.

The project is being headed from Aibel’s Oslo office, while the construction of the two platform topsides is taking place at Aibel’s yard in Thailand. The topsides will then be transported to Haugesund, where they will be outfitted with Hitachi Energy’s HVDC converter valve technology prior to final completion and commissioning.

The unmanned platforms will have a lean design, with a steel jacket structure, and will be operated from shore and accessed for maintenance by Service Operations Vessels (SOVs) or helicopters, according to Aibel.

The Norwegian company last year contracted Heerema Marine Contractors to transport and install the two HVDC offshore converter platforms for Hornsea Three, including both jackets and platform topsides.

The 2,852 MW Hornsea Three, which was awarded a Contract for Difference (CfD) in July 2022, will be built 120 kilometres off the north Norfolk coast, where up to 231 wind turbines will be installed.

The offshore wind farm is expected to be commissioned in 2027 and, with a generation capacity of 2,852 MW, it will be able to produce enough electricity to power 3.2 million UK homes, according to the developer.


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