innogy SE hails installation of first turbine at Galloper offshore wind farm
- Credit: Archant
The first turbine has been installed at the Galloper Wind Farm site off the coast of East Anglia – one of three major construction milestones reached by the project.
The offshore substation, from which power will be carried by cables to an onshore substation at Sizewell, is also now in place and work on installing the second and final cable between the two substations is now in progress.
Turbine supplier Siemens completed the installation of the first of the 56 six-megawatt turbines which will make up the new wind farm yesterday, supported by the installation vessel Pacific Orca operated by Swire Blue Ocean.
The offshore substation platform was successfully placed earlier this month, by Seaway Heavy Lifting's vessel Oleg Strashnov, and contractor VBNK began the installation of the second 'export' cable on May 7.
Toby Edmonds, project director of Galloper Wind Farm Ltd, said: 'To reach three key milestones in the project simultaneously and see Galloper take shape after years of planning is a proud moment for all the team and the project partners.
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'Installing the first turbine on an offshore wind farm is always a powerful moment. It's a tribute to our project partner and turbine supplier, Siemens, who have worked hard with the Galloper team to prepare for this major project milestone. We're delighted the first turbine has been installed efficiently and safely.
'The remaining turbines will now be installed and the project will be completed early next year.'
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The turbines are being shipped from a purpose-built Siemens' assembly base at Peel Ports, Great Yarmouth, where the towers are put together and prepared by a 70-strong workforce.
The offshore substation was manufactured by Heerema at its fabrication base in Hartlepool on behalf of Alstom Petrofac Consortium.
Sizewell beach, where the export cables come ashore, is due to be returned to its original condition this summer, once installation of the second cable is completed.
Work is also continuing on the offshore 'array' cables, linking the individual turbines to the offshore substation, which are being installed by the VBMS vessel Stemat Spirit, with 26 of 56 cables having been installed so far.
The construction project also involves a co-ordination base at ABP's Port of Lowestoft and the completed scheme will be supported by an operations and maintenance base at Harwich.
Galloper Wind Farm Ltd is a 25% joint equity partnership between innogy SE, the UK Green Investment Bank, Siemens Financial Services and Macquarie Capital, with innogy SE overseeing construction.
The turbines are being installed around 17 miles off the coast of Suffolk, with Galloper effectively representing an extension of the existing Greater Gabbard wind farm.
Up to 700 jobs are expected to be created during construction with around 90 long-term jobs to follow once the site becomes fully operational. The first electricity is expected to be generated some time this summer, with construction due to be completed in March next year.
Annual output from Galloper is expected to be equivalent to the energy needs of up to 336,000 average UK households.