By Renewable Energy Focus staff
The centre is a partnership between Vattenfall, Technip and Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group (AREG), and has received a grant of up to €40 million from the EU. An agreement has been reached with the Crown Estate and the full planning application will be submitted in June, AREG said in a session at All-Energy.
David Hodkinson, UK Country Manager of Vattenfall in the UK, said: “We want to hear from anyone who thinks they have something to offer the safe, rapid, cost effective and environmentally sustainable deployment of offshore wind turbines around Europe; getting in early gives you and edge. The centre will provide a major opportunity to deploy new technologies, goods and services ahead of the major development of Round 3 offshore wind farms – helping Scotland and the UK to achieve a strong position.
“We are therefore keen to speak to turbine manufacturers, supply chain companies, universities and research establishments about their participation.”
A supply chain workshop for offshore wind turbine manufacturers and foundation, cabling and installation contractors is planned for the centre in June this year.
AREG’s Renewables Champion, Iain Todd, told the audience at All-Energy that part of the reasoning behind developing the centre is that Scotland has higher wind speeds than continental Europe, and that it would therefore make sense to offer a demonstration site for offshore wind for Scottish waters.
The site will have the capability to test offshore wind turbines in depths of down to 30 m. No decision has yet been taken on what offshore wind turbines to install other than that they will be between 4 and 10 MW. Todd said, however, that he personally believes there will be three different wind turbines at the site.
Type of foundation is also up to partners, and the site could furthermore be used to demonstrate electrical works, HVDC, storage, cabling, etc. In terms of operations and maintenance, the site could prove useful to gain experience and to look at health and safety, and emergency response techniques.