DONG Energy has appointed a UK supplier to carry out offshore
pre-construction surveys for the Walney Extension offshore wind farm off the coast of Cumbria.
Portsmouth based Fugro EMU will begin seabed survey work in the Irish Sea this month.
The purpose of the preconstruction & engineering survey is to provide detailed information to the Walney Extension project team, including additional geophysical data to ensure the seabed is clear of obstructions, including unexploded Second World War ordnance, before windfarm construction starts. At a later stage, a contractor will be appointed to carry out a detailed survey with a remotely operated vehicle to check for and, if necessary, deal with any debris or ordnance found.
Fugro will use three specialist vessels: the 41-metre Fugro Helmert will concentrate on surveying the main windfarm site, while the 24-metre RV Discovery will operate on both the wind farm site and the export cable route. The nearshore works on the export cable route will be undertaken by the 12-metre Fugro Valkyrie.
Andrew Cotterell, DONG Energy's programme director for Walney Extension said: "Carrying out geophysical surveys is an important step before we can safely begin offshore construction. We are delighted to be working with an experienced UK contractor on this phase of our programme."
Nick Simmons, Deputy Geophysics Business Line Manager at Fugro EMU said: "We are looking forward to applying our specialist skills and resources in UXO detection at this significant site and are pleased that our extensive experience continues to contribute to the strong relationship between Fugro and DONG Energy."
DONG Energy took a final investment decision to construct the 660MW Walney Extension Offshore Wind Farm in October 2015. The windfarm is expected to be fully commissioned in 2019, at which point it will be the biggest offshore wind farm in the world, surpassing the 630MW London Array Offshore Wind Farm which was commissioned in 2014 by DONG Energy and its partners.