Ballast Nedam was won a contract for the construction of the foundations for a giant offshore wind farm in the Irish Sea.
The Dutch-owned contractor has signed a deal with Walney (UK) Offshore Windfarms (a joint venture between DONG Energy of Denmark and Scottish and Southern Energy in the UK) to install 51 foundations for offshore wind turbines as part of the Walney II project.
The project is located in the Irish Sea, 20km off the west coast of England near Barrow-in-Furness. The 51 turbines each have a capacity of 3.6 MW, resulting in a total capacity of 183.6 MW.
Ballast Nedam Offshore will install the tubular steel piles which form part of the foundations. These monopiles weigh between 800 and 1000 tons each, which makes them the heaviest monopiles ever used as the foundation for an offshore wind turbine.
Nevertheless, the weight involved is well within the maximum lifting capacity of Ballast Nedam's heavy lift vessel Svanen, which is built to handle 8,700 tons. The Svanen will start putting the foundations in place during the second quarter of 2011.
The Svanen is currently installing 90 foundations for the Sheringham Shoal Offshore Wind Park in the United Kingdom, which lies between 17 and 23km off the coast of Sheringham, Norfolk.