Belgian offshore installation firm DEME has, via its French branch SDI, secured an engineering, procurement, construction, and installation contract for an export cable that will connect the Leucate Floating offshore wind farm to the power grid, in France.
The contract was awarded to DEME, in consortium with JDR Cables, Réseau de Transport d'Électricité (RTE), the electricity transmission system operator of France.
The 30 MW wind farm is currently being developed by Les Eoliennes Flottantes du Golfe du Lion (EFGL), a consortium comprising Ocean Winds and Caisse de Dépôts, and is located 16 km off the South East coast of France in the Mediterranean Sea.
Located off the coast of the Leucate-Le Barcarès area, the demonstration floating wind farm will feature three V164-10.0 MW wind turbines, in water depths of 65 to 80 meters.
The export cable will include a submarine cable and an onshore cable section, connecting into the onshore substation near Le Barcarès. Construction activities are set to start in 2022. DEME Offshore did not share the financial details of the contract.
The Belgium-based contractor did not say which vessel it would use to install the cable, however, it did use a photo of its Living Stone vessel to illustrate the news of the contract.
Philip Scheers, Business Unit Director at DEME Offshore, comments: “We are delighted to be awarded this important EPCI contract for one of the first floating wind farms in the world. By combining RTE’s experience in grid connections, including export cables, with our extensive track record and expertise in the offshore wind sector and subsea operations, and JDR’s experience in static and dynamic cable manufacturing, the consortium partners are confident we will make this pioneering project a success – really putting the French floating offshore wind industry on the map.”
In a separate statement on Tuesday JDR said it would design and manufacture the dynamic and static cables to connect the floating turbines to the shore, where they will connect to a grid at Saint-Laurent de la Salanque. SDI will undertake the overall delivery and installation of the cables provided by JDR.
"JDR’s ‘wet design’ 66kV cable removes the need for a lead radial water barrier – the component most susceptible to dynamic fatigue due to the movement of a floating turbine. In addition, the specially designed breakaway system will then protect the floating platform in the unlikely event of a mooring line failure in harsh weather conditions," JDR said.
Wojtek Skoczylas, CSO at JDR Cables, commented: “The floating offshore wind market is accelerating at a rapid pace. As waters get deeper, innovations in 66kV dynamic cables like ours will be required to meet demand. It’s an exciting time for the industry and subsea cable technology! We’re delighted to have won this project and to be again working in close partnership with the DEME group, having collaborated on many previous projects.”
The cables will be manufactured at JDR’s facility in Hartlepool, UK in 2022 before being shipped to France for installation in 2022.