Final Moray East OTM to set sail

In: ConvertersWindfarms
The third and final offshore transformer module (OTM) is soon to leave its fabrication yard, sailing to the Moray East offshore wind farm location, 22 km off the coast of Aberdeenshire, Scotland. The final of three OTMs for the project, OSP1 was fabricated and fitted out in Hoboken, Belgium, by Smulders, ENGIE Solutions, and Siemens Energy. Sitting atop three-legged jackets, each OTM will transmit power generated by the wind farm’s 100 turbines to shore. It will transform power from 66 kV to 220 kV for transmission. The transmitted energy will join the national grid and be distributed to domestic and business users.

Siemens describes the OTM as “significantly smaller in size and weight compared to conventional alternating current offshore wind platforms”. Siemens used a modular fabrication approach to design OSP1. This approach is a time-saver and a cost-saver and allows a more personalised approach to meet the developer’s needs.

Marcel Sunier, Project Director for Moray Offshore Windfarm (East) Ltd said: “This latest major milestone in the delivery of Moray East is a reminder that the step-change in the transition to low-cost, low-carbon power is enabled by scale and by world-leading innovations.  Those innovations include the use of three OTMs, whose modular construction itself marked a major advancement in offshore transmission technology.

“I would like to thank all those working for the contractor and subcontractors involved in advancing the project’s transmission infrastructure safely to this point. As a well-known supplier in the UK market, Siemens Energy, responsible for the delivery of the project’s transmission infrastructure, has created opportunities for local UK firms to participate in the global offshore marketplace on which offshore wind depends for making renewable energy highly competitive.”

Smulders’ Project Manager, Bart Van Rooy said: “The fabrication of the OTMs according to the Siemens Energy modular design approach with skidded-in containers was a success. This milestone – three sail-aways without any snags – reached in a period dealing with a lot of COVID restrictions, has been achieved not only due to the very good co-operation between Siemens Energy and Smulders – ENGIE Solutions on all levels, but also due to the fact the structural and electrical works could be executed in parallel for the major part of the construction period.”

The 950 MW Moray East project is being developed by Moray Offshore Windfarm East Ltd (MOWEL), a joint venture company owned by Diamond Green Limited (33.4%), EDPR (33.3 %), ENGIE (23.3%) and CTG (10%). It will feature 100 MHI Vestas V164-9.5 MW turbines and three offshore substations which are to be installed around 22km from the coast in the Moray Firth, Scotland.

The project secured a Contract for Difference of £57.50/MWh from the UK Government in 2017, and is due to start generating power in 2021. Construction on the project started in Winter 2018, with commencement of the onshore works and the wind farm is expected to be fully operational in 2022.

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