Port work underway to welcome turbines arrival

PREPARATORY works have begun for the installation of turbines at the Triton Knoll Offshore Wind Farm in Hartlepool. MHI Vestas Offshore Wind has moved into the Able Seaton Port ready to install 90 of its turbines at the start of 2021. Able Seaton 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 the port, before being loaded onto vessels for transport to the wind farm. Triton Knoll is being built by RWE Renewables in partnership with J-Power and Kansai Electric Power. It 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 early 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 VP and UK country manager, Julian Brown, said: "MHI Vestas' commitment to the UK is demonstrated by the local benefits we have prioritised for the Triton Knoll project. "Able UK's close collaboration with MHI Vestas to prepare the ASP (Able Seaton Port) 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.

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