RWE Innogy and ABB have signed a contract for delivery of underwater cable for the offshore wind farm “Nordsee Ost” for which ABB will supply around 63 km of sea cable. The cables will be used to network the 48 wind turbines of the wind farm with one another and connect them to an offshore transformer station. The undersea cable will be produced by an ABB subsidiary in Sweden. The contract is valued at around EUR 10 million.
“We’re well on schedule with the preparation for construction of our first German offshore wind farm,” said Prof. Martin Skiba, Head of Offshore Wind at RWE Innogy. “With turbines, foundations and cables, we have now secured the main components and can begin with the construction at sea as planned in the autumn of next year.”
The 33-kV underwater cable ordered by RWE Innogy has a diameter of up to 16 cm. Especially robust sheathing protects it against the extreme demands at high sea, such as corrosion or wear through tides and waves. At the same time, it guarantees maximum energy transmission over great distances. These high-performance power connections will be laid by special cable-laying ships.
The home port for construction of the “Nordsee Ost” wind farm will be Bremerhaven. From there, the 48 wind turbines will be taken out to sea and installed around 33 km northeast of Helgoland. The work will be carried out by one of the world’s biggest offshore construction ships. RWE Innogy has awarded the contract for the building of two of these vessels -- with an investment volume of EUR 100 million each -- to a Korean shipyard. RWE Innogy has ordered the wind turbines of the 6-MW class from the turbine manufacturer REpower Systems. These are planned to produce power from as early as mid-2012. Full completion of the “Nordsee Ost” wind farm is planned for 2013. From then onward, the wind power plant with an installed capacity of 295 MW will supply the equivalent of around 295,000 homes in Germany with power every year.
Besides the “Nordsee Ost” wind farm, RWE Innogy is developing the offshore wind farm “Innogy Nordsee 1” in German territorial waters. At around 960 million MW of installed power, that wind power plant is the biggest offshore wind farm planned off the German coast. It will be built 40 km to the north of the North Sea island of Juist on a site of around 150 square km.
Off the north coast of Wales, RWE Innogy is already operating the offshore wind farms “North Hoyle” (60 MW) and “Rhyl Flats” (90 MW). The decision to build a third wind farm off Wales, “Gwynt y Môr” (576 MW), was made recently. In addition, the company presently has a 50 percent stake in the construction of the 504 MW wind farm “Greater Gabbard” off the southeast coast of England. Alone or with partners, RWE Innogy is presently developing further major projects in the UK, such as “Triton Knoll” (1,200 MW), “Atlantic Array” (1,500 MW), “Galloper” (500 MW) and “Dogger Bank” (around 9,000 MW). In Belgium, the company is also involved in the “Thornton Bank” wind farm, which in its first stage (30 MW) is already in commercial operation, and is also developing the offshore wind project “Tromp Binnen” (300 MW) in the Netherlands.