Triton Knoll pre-assembly hub ramps up activity
London, United Kingdom
October 6, 2020
MHI Vestas Offshore Wind moves into Able Seaton Port (ASP) as preparatory works begin for turbine installation of the Triton Knoll Offshore Wind Farm.
MHI Vestas has moved in to Able Seaton Port (ASP) in Hartlepool ready to install 90 of its V164-9.5 MW turbines at the Triton Knoll project in Q1 2021.
This signals a major ramp up in MHI Vestas’ UK offshore wind activity supporting the leading role of offshore wind in the delivery of the UK’s Net Zero ambitions, while helping drive a green economic recovery from the ongoing COVID pandemic.
ASP will serve as the turbine logistics and pre-assembly hub for the project, with components expected to arrive from next month. Turbine tower sections, blades and nacelles will be marshalled and pre-assembled at ASP, before being loaded onto vessels for transport to the wind farm.
Triton Knoll, the 857 MW offshore wind farm, is being built by RWE Renewables in partnership with J-Power and Kansai Electric Power, and is RWE’s most powerful offshore project under construction. The wind farm will be powered by 90 MHI Vestas V164-9.5 MW turbines, which are due to be installed 32km off the Lincolnshire coast beginning in Q1 next year.
Each turbine consists of 80m long blades, which are manufactured at MHI Vestas’ facility on the Isle of Wight, and finished at its Fawley plant across the Solent. The Fawley facility is a decommissioned, oil-fired power plant that has been repurposed into a state-of-the-art painting and logistics facility for the 80m-long blades.
“MHI Vestas’ commitment to the UK is demonstrated by the local benefits we have prioritised for the Triton Knoll project,” said MHI Vestas VP and UK Country Manager, Julian Brown. “Able UK’s close collaboration with MHI Vestas to prepare the ASP site for Triton Knoll has made it an easy choice to use this top-class facility. The site covers approximately 140,000 square metres with heavy duty deep water quays, a vital pre-requisite for a project the scale of Triton Knoll.
“The Triton Knoll project will deliver clean, domestic offshore wind power to UK customers with added national benefits. Not only will most of our suppliers at ASP be British companies, but the vast majority of the employees involved will also be from the UK.”
Port owner Able UK carried out extensive site preparation works from November last year, to create a site suitable for MHI Vestas to move into. MHI Vestas, in turn, has now begun to prepare the site at ASP site for the impending arrival of turbine components, prioritising UK companies in the delivery of the project. As a result, ASP now hosts technicians on-site from local suppliers, including Global Wind Service (GWS), Dawson and Boston Energy, as well as MHI Vestas employees. The main crane and Self-Propelled Modular Transporter (SPMT) to be used at ASP for moving turbine components will be supplied by Weldex, based out of Alfreton, UK.
Julian Garnsey, Project Director for Triton Knoll and RWE Renewables, said: “At Triton Knoll we are committed to ensuring that our investments from this flagship project benefit local coastal communities, and the UK’s expanding offshore supply chain as much as possible.
“As part of that commitment we have made a significant investment to establish wind turbine handling facilities for the first time at Able Seaton Port. This places the North East of England at the heart of the delivery of Triton Knoll, and leaves a legacy for future offshore wind farm projects to be constructed from the region.
“We are delighted to be working with MHI Vestas and Able UK delivering this new UK infrastructure, and we are looking forward to the first Triton Knoll components arriving at Seaton in the coming months, ready for installation to begin early next year.”
Peter Stephenson, Able UK’s Executive Chairman, commented: “We have enjoyed a long and constructive relationship with Triton Knoll and MHI Vestas culminating in their selection of ASP – it’s a massive vote of confidence in the UK, ourselves and the Teesside supply chain. Our sustained investment means we can provide a bespoke and tailor-made solution for Triton Knoll.
“The offshore wind sector is potentially on the cusp of something very special. We have a clear and unambiguous policy from Whitehall through the Sector Deal in the Industrial Strategy, and the increasingly demanding targets for both power generation and the extent of UK content. Combine this with the sector’s extraordinary efforts in terms of developing new products and significantly reducing costs and the sector is set to become a dominant factor in a post Covid-19 UK economy.”
MHI Vestas will be installing several projects across the UK and Scotland in the coming years, including Triton Knoll, Moray East, Seagreen and Kincardine. These projects will continue to be supplied by MHI Vestas’ blade facility in the Isle of Wight and supported from existing offices in Warrington and London. MHI Vestas currently employs 1,096 people in the UK, all focused on delivering clean offshore wind energy to meet the UK government’s ambition of increasing new offshore wind capacity to 40GW by 2030.
About MHI Vestas Offshore Wind
MHI Vestas Offshore Wind is a joint venture between Vestas Wind Systems A/S (50%) and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (50%). The company’s focus is to design, manufacture, install and service wind turbines for the offshore wind industry. The company aims to create sustainable value through offshore wind power by driving capital and operating savings and increasing the power output of wind turbines. An innovative force in offshore wind since its inception in 2014, the company is guided by its founding principles of collaboration, trust, technology and commitment.
About Able Seaton Port
Able Seaton Port (ASP) is a 51-hectare (126 acre) site and has some of the strongest quays in Europe which have been constructed particularly to suit the requirements of the offshore energy sector. ASP has the capacity to handle virtually all offshore vessels that are operating in the North Sea. ASP has large mobile harbour and crawler cranes already available along with self-propelled mobile transporters (SPMTs) and other plant and equipment to handle offshore wind components. In 2018 ASP provided the installation base and all onshore handling activities for the Hornsea One offshore wind farm foundation package. From the end of 2022, ASP will also be the installation base for the Dogger Bank A and B offshore wind farm’s turbine packages.
About RWE Renewables
RWE Renewables, the newest subsidiary of the RWE Group, is one of the world’s leading renewable energy companies. With around 3,500 employees, the company has onshore and offshore wind farms, photovoltaic plants and battery storage facilities with a combined capacity of approximately 9 gigawatts. RWE Renewables is driving the expansion of renewable energy in more than 15 countries on four continents. By the end of 2022, RWE Renewables targets to invest €5 billion net in renewable energy and to grow its renewables portfolio to 13 gigawatts of net capacity. Beyond this, the company plans to further grow in wind and solar power. The focus is on the Americas, the core markets in Europe and the Asia-Pacific region.
About Triton Knoll Offshore Wind Farm
- Triton Knoll is an 857MW Round 2 offshore wind farm, owned by RWE (59%), J-Power (24%) and Kansai Electric Power (16%). RWE is building and will operate the project on behalf of the partnership.
- Turbines: 90 V164-9.5 MW turbines provided by MHI Vestas
- Pre-assembly and logistics port: ABLE UK Seaton Port
- Location: Greater Wash strategic area, 32 kilometres off the Lincolnshire coast
- Planned installed capacity: 857 MW, capable of supplying the equivalent of over 800,000 UK households per year with offshore wind energy