Windfarm O&M decision for Great Yarmouth
Tue, 10 December 2013
Dudgeon Offshore Wind Ltd has decided to go further with Great Yarmouth as the preferred harbour location for the operation and maintenance activities for the Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm.
Operations and maintenance of the wind farm will be performed by technicians taken to site either by smaller vessels on a daily basis or using a larger ship staying on the site for weeks. So far, Dudgeon is the wind farm which is located furthest from the UK east coast. This raises special requirements relating to vessel performance, and several alternatives are under consideration.
The chairman of Dudgeon Offshore Wind Board of Directors, Mr Halfdan Brustad said: "We need a harbour with the flexibility to meet the range of concepts under consideration, and to accommodate the changes anticipated in vessel solutions as technology develops during the 25-30 years lifetime of the wind farm. Great Yarmouth can provide a good location for offices and warehousing on the quayside, and a 24/7 harbour to handle the range of vessel categories under consideration".
The Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm was granted consent in 2012 and its development is currently being planned. The financial investment decision for the 400 MW wind farm is planned for Q3/ 2014 and the first electricity generation is expected in 2017. The operation and maintenance organisation will consist of turbine technicians working offshore and a technical and administrative support staff working onshore.
"Depending on the operations model, there could be between 50-70 employees engaged in these activities", said Mr Brustad.
Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm is owned by two Norwegian companies, Statoil [70%] and Statkraft [30%], with Statoil as the manager for both the construction and the operational phase. Most recently the two companies have worked together to develop and operate the Sheringham Shoal Offshore Wind Farm, the 88 turbine power plant [317MW] which is located 9-17 miles off the coast of Sheringham.
The licence for the Dudgeon site was awarded by The Crown Estate during the Round 2 allocations in 2003.
Its consent allows for up to 560MW of installed electricity generation capacity. The owners have, after thorough planning, decided that the optimal installed capacity will be about 400 MW. It lies within a government approved area for such development with high wind speeds and favourable water depths, and where there is a relatively low level of fishing and shipping activity.