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RWE Chooses GE Renewable Energy’s Grid Solutions & Sembcorp Marine for Sofia Offshore Wind Farm Electrical Transmission System

Power News - Published on Tue, 14 Jul 2020

Image Source: RWE Sofia Offshore Wind Farm
RWE has moved a step closer to the realisation of its 1.4 gigawatt Sofia Offshore Wind Farm with the selection of the preferred suppliers for the project’s high voltage direct current transmission system. A specially formed consortium of GE Renewable Energy’s Grid Solutions and Sembcorp Marine is set to supply the state-of-the-art system for Sofia, one of the world’s largest offshore wind farm projects, located on Dogger Bank, the shallow area of the central North Sea, 195 kilometres from the UK coast’s nearest point. As the consortium leader, GE’s Grid Solutions will be responsible for the engineering, procurement, construction and installation of two HVDC converter stations capable of transmitting 1,400 megawatts of power at 320 kilovolts. Innovative converter modules and a new high-tech control system have been deployed for Sofia. It will be the most powerful offshore converter station ever fabricated and will be installed at a point 220 kilometres from shore, so will also be the most remote.

The offshore converter platform will be built and installed by Sembcorp Marine. At the heart of the wind farm, it will comprise 10,000 tonnes topside attached to a jacket foundation piled into the seabed. The onshore converter station will convert the electricity generated by the wind farm to 400 kV, before it enters the national grid.

GE’s Grid Solutions and Sembcorp Marine are starting early design works in July, with the full contract subject to the project’s final investment decision, due in the first quarter of 2021. The HVDC transmission system represents Sofia’s second largest contract and will include the design, manufacture, installation, commissioning and maintenance of the offshore converter platform and the onshore converter station, including all ancillary equipment.

Construction of the wind farm is due to begin onshore at its Teesside converter station site early next year, with offshore construction expected to get underway in 2023. The HVDC transmission system news follows the announcement that Sofia has signed a preferred supplier agreement with Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy for 100 of its SG 14-222 DD offshore wind turbines, a 14MW design that is 25 percent more powerful than its next largest model.

With an installed capacity of more than 9.5 GW RWE is UK's second largest generator of electricity. Via its subsidiary, RWE Renewables, the company has significant experience in the British offshore market with nine wind farms in operation off the UK coast and Triton Knoll Offshore Wind Farm 857 MW currently under construction. Further offshore development projects, like Sofia, 100% owned by RWE, underline the growth ambitions of the company in this country.

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Posted By : Yogender Pancholi on Tue, 14 Jul 2020
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