In the long term, wind energy is the most important and economic renewable energy source in the field of electricity. Many offshore wind farms that are planned or currently under construction are located in the North and Baltic Seas, such as the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm Ltd (BOWL) project off the northeastern coast of Scotland. From 2019, 84 turbines will generate 588 megawatts of electricity over an area of around 130 square kilometers – enough electricity to supply 450,000 homes. Bauer Renewables Ltd., a subsidiary of Bauer Spezialtiefbau GmbH, will be involved in the foundation work with an underwater drilling rig specially designed for use on the high seas in order to relief drill the foundation piles.
For each of the 84 turbines, four foundation piles with a diameter of 2.2 m each and lengths between 32 and 54 m are required. The subsoil consists of sand and hard clay with scattered boulders. All piles will be installed by the client, Seaway Heavy Lifting (SHL), using the pile-driving method. Sometimes, in difficult soil conditions, the piles could experience early refusal. Then Bauer may drill inside to relief the piles from excess friction.
In 2011, Bauer Renewables Ltd. successfully carried out the foundation work for a tidal turbine off the Scottish coast near Orkney. Like six years ago, a specially designed drilling rig from Bauer Maschinen GmbH – the Bauer Dive Drill C40 – will be used as part of the current project. The drilling rig is designed especially for fast use underwater with an optimal drilling speed.
"We are extremely pleased to be involved in such an outstanding project," says Paul Scheller, Managing Director of Bauer Renewables Ltd. "The contract marks a further important step for us in the future market of renewable energies and shows that, with our know-how and technology, Bauer is also optimally prepared for challenging foundation projects in the offshore sector."
The GBP 2.6 billion Beatrice Offshore Windfarm Ltd (BOWL) project has been given the green light for construction by owners SSE (40 %), Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) (35 %) and SDIC (25 %) after reaching Financial Close on 23 May 2016. The project will be one of the largest private investments ever made in Scottish infrastructure.
Source: Bauer Group
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