Iberdrola is progressing Wikinger Offshore Windfarm towards construction. Click through the timeline below for a more detailed background on the project's key milestones.
In March 2010, Iberdrola acquired 100% of the construction rights to Wikinger Offshore Windfarm from the joint venture between DEE Deutsche Erneuerbare Energien GmbH (Deutsche Bank Group) and Ventotec GmbH (GHF-Group).
The project is located approximately 75 km from the mainland close to the island of Rügen, in the northern part of an area known as Westlich Adlergrund, which the German authorities have designated as a Priority Offshore Development Area. It will host 70 wind turbines generating up to 350 megawatts.
In 2010, the site had existing permits to install floating wind turbines, however, due to this technology being in a relatively early stage of development and the specific conditions of the Baltic sea, work began to update the permit for fixed foundations, involving a detailed 12 month environmental impact assessment being undertaken.
Following an in-depth environmental impact assessment undertaken over the past 12 months, Iberdrola began to apply for the updated permits to change the foundation type from floating turbine bases to fixed foundations. The planned project design was presented in detail to the German authorities for consideration. The permit for fixed foundations was successfully awarded.
British company Gardline Group and GEO of Denmark, both leading businesses in their field, were appointed to undertake geological seabed surveys, the findings of which were used to inform the wind turbine foundation design for what will be one of the world’s largest deep-water windfarms.
The surveys saw specially designed vessels take stratigraphic samples of sedimentary and metamorphic rocks, requiring 63-metre boreholes to be drilled. They also conducted seismic surveys using sound waves to determine the structure of the terrain.
A preferred wind turbine supplier agreement was signed with Adwen, a Gamesa and Areva joint venture, under which, Adwen will support Iberdrola on foundation and tower design optimization, project logistics, installation concept and project certification with regulator Bundesamt für Seeschifffahrt und Hydrographie (BSH).
The candidate turbine for Wikinger has been announced as the AD5-135, the first 5 MW wind turbine designed exclusively for large-scale offshore windfarms. The blades will be manufactured in Stade and the rest of the components will be assembled in Bremerhaven, both located in Germany. When signed, the contract will also include equipment transportation, installation, commissioning and maintenance.
This will be the first time that IBERDROLA installs 5 MW turbines at a windfarm, representing a great technological leap forward for the company.
A €20 million geotechnical feasibility campaign was successfully completed in May 2013, fulfilling a key milestone needed to obtain project certification from the German regulator, BSH.
The work involved a full geological survey of the site’s 34 km2 seabed, stratigraphic samples of sedimentary and metamorphic rocks being drilled out and seismic surveys using sound waves to determine the structure of the terrain.
The findings will be used to define the dimensions and design of turbine foundations and will determine the windfarm installation method.
The Offshore Terminal South at the Port of Sassnitz has been selected as the optimum alternative for warehousing, assembly, storing, and transportation of components and wind turbines to the Wikinger Offshore Windfarm site. An area of approximately 100,000 m2 has been secured for the foreseen installation period.
Key activities to be hosted in the port include load-in from transport vessels, storage and load-out to installation vessels of the main components of the wind farm, such as foundations, piles, jackets, wind turbines and cable.
German engineering and services group, Bilfinger, was appointed under a €20 million contract to conduct tests in order to confirm the design of the wind turbine foundations, checking the performance of the proposed piles against static, dynamic and cyclic loads specific for offshore structures.
Nine steel piles, fabricated in Aschersleben in Germany by Bilfinger MCE, were driven into the seabed at selected locations, with static and dynamic tension and pressure tests to be conducted under water for several weeks. This was pioneering work that had never been carried out before was successfully completed in 2015.
Undertaken by Navantia shipyards in Puerto Real, fabrication of the Offshore Sub Station for Wikinger has commenced.
For Wikinger, the foundations and piles will be delivered by two contractors; Navantia located in Fene, Spain and Bladt Industries located in Lindo, Denmark, supported by EEW in Rostock – work on the construction of these components has now begun.
Adwen is supplying the wind turbines for the Wikinger project and initial fabrication works for the blades of the 5 megawatt machines has begun at their Stade facility in Germany. These will be the largest-ever turbines to be installed on an Iberdrola project.
In October 2015, we hosted a Supplier Day event at the Landesvertretung Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in Berlin to introduce local companies experienced in offshore wind with our main contractors; Adwen, Navantia, Offshore WindForce and Prysmian.
Christian Pegel, Minister for Energy, Infrastructure and Regional Development for Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, the local Chamber of Commerce and the German Wind Energy Network supported this event and we were pleased to see more than 100 companies engage directly with our contractors to explore possible collaboration opportunities.
First half of 2016
In preparation for the installation of the wind turbines, the foundation piles must be installed and the foundations fitted. This work is scheduled to commence in early 2016.
Second half of 2016
In 2016, the Offshore Sub Station will be shipped to its location in the windfarm site and installation works will begin. Work to install the cables that will connect the wind turbines in their arrays and then connect into the Offshore Sub Station will also begin in 2016.
In 2017, Wikinger Offshore Windfarm’s 70 wind turbines will be installed and fully commissioned and the project will be complete, generating up to 350 megawatts of power.