Site Survey to Start for Sofia Offshore Wind Farm Construction

June 25, 2020

Heaven Seariser 2 - Credit: Innogy
Heaven Seariser 2 - Credit: Innogy

The Haven Seariser 2 jack-up vessel will soon be at work at nearshore area between Redcar and Marske-by-the-Sea in the UK to carry out a six-month offshore site investigation by service provider Fugro for Innogy's Sofia offshore wind farm.

"The jack-up vessel Haven Seariser 2 will be visible to local residents and coast visitors for approximately a month while it carries out a series of boreholes. The boreholes together with earlier surveys will gather data that will feed into the planning of the final design and installation methodology for the main transmission cable where it reaches landfall," Innogy said Thursday.

The vessel has four legs that will be lowered to the seabed, enabling it to lift up above the water and create a steady platform for each borehole to be safely carried out. It will be towed between borehole sites by a towing vessel and is due to leave the area by the end of July, Innogy added.

The Sofia offshore wind farm is the largest project in Innogy's development portfolio and one of the world’s biggest offshore wind farms will be located on Dogger Bank, in the North Sea.

The power generated by the wind farm will travel via a 220-kilometer long electricity export cable from the offshore converter platform to shore, at its landfall between Redcar and Marske-by-the-Sea.

Sofia’s Principal Geotechnical Engineer, Andy Barwise said: “The information gathered during these borehole surveys will be used to fine-tune the design of the export cable and also how it will be installed. A technique called horizontal directional drilling is likely to be used to install the cable underneath the intertidal area and the beach, and these surveys will help us refine that planned methodology."

From landfall, onshore cables will transport the power to a new onshore converter station to be built near the village of Lazenby, adjacent to the Wilton Complex. Construction is due to start onshore in early 2021.

Earlier this week, Innogy announced it had chosen giant 14 megawatt (MW) offshore wind turbines for the Sofia offshore wind project.

Subject to a final investment decision - expected in 1Q 2021 - Innogy will order 100 units of the recently launched new Siemens Gamesa SG 14-222 DD offshore wind turbines, for the Sofia.

The 14 MW capacity allows one SG 14-222 DD machine able to provide enough energy to power approximately 18,000 average European households every year. The 222-meter diameter rotor uses the new Siemens Gamesa B108 blades, each 108 meters long.



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