Successful installation of two offshore substations in the North Sea

Successful installation of two offshore substations in the North Sea
Photo: DEME

The two substations for the SeaMade offshore wind farm have been successfully installed in the Belgian North Sea. This installation marks a major milestone in the construction of Belgium’s largest offshore wind farm.

Each with a weight of 1,200 tonnes, the substations are the beating heart of the offshore wind farm. They transform the wind energy that is produced to 225 kV, which in turn allows the electricity to be brought to shore via Elia’s Modular Offshore Grid (MOG). The export cable transmitting the electricity to shore has been installed earlier with DEME’s cable installation vessel ‘Living Stone’.

The installation of the substations was executed with heavy lift vessel ‘Gulliver’, operated by DEME’s subsidiary Scaldis which is specialised in marine heavy lifting works. Earlier DEME’s offshore installation vessel ‘Innovation’ installed all of the foundations, including those for the two substations.

Bart de Poorter, General Manager DEME Offshore comments:

“Despite the challenging weather conditions over the past weeks the SeaMade project is firmly on track. The successful installation of the two offshore substations was only made possible thanks to the close cooperation between the SeaMade team and our partners Smulders, ENGIE Fabricom and Tractebel, as well as the highly skilled experts on board of our vessels.”

Mathias Verkest CEO SeaMade offshore wind farm comments:

“I am thrilled to see this oversized mecano being put together, bringing us closer step by step to the start of green energy production for 485.000 households as from autumn this year.A big thank you to the SeaMade team and all parties involved for the close cooperation and joined efforts to make this happen.”

The installation of 58 turbines will begin in spring. DEME will deploy its offshore installation vessel ‘Apollo’, which recently performed the precision foundation piling operation at the Moray East offshore wind farm in Scotland. However, this will be the first turbine installation project for ‘Apollo’. This versatile vessel has had a full orderbook since its inauguration in February last year.

In April cable installation vessel ‘Living Stone’ will start the installation of the inter array cables.