RWE selects preferred suppliers for Thor offshore wind farm

Siemens Energy to build onshore high voltage substation and HSM Offshore Energy chosen for offshore high voltage substation and jacket foundation

RWE has said that it has progressed with the deployment of its Thor offshore wind farm by selecting two preferred suppliers for the electrical transmission system and that it has entered into early works agreements with them.

In a statement, the German multinational said that Siemens Energy was the preferred supplier for the design, construction and installation of the onshore high voltage substation. It added the work will be carried out by the company’s Offshore Centre of Competence, which is located in Ballerup, Denmark.

HSM Offshore Energy has been chosen as the preferred supplier for the engineering, procurement, construction, installation and commissioning of the offshore high voltage substation and its jacket foundation, the statement added.

Pia Lanken, CEO RWE Renewables Denmark, said: “With the selection of preferred suppliers for the electrical transmission system we have reached the next milestone in the development of our Thor offshore wind farm, which will massively contribute towards Denmark’s ambitious climate targets. 

“To deploy this offshore project, we rely on our 20-year track-record in offshore wind and on experienced suppliers, which will work, where possible, hand in hand with Danish supply chain companies and local workforce.”

The details of the new Thor offshore wind farm

The Thor offshore wind farm is being built by RWE off the Danish west coast – approximately 22-kilometres from Thorsminde on the west coast of Jutland. With a planned capacity of 1,000 megawatts (MW), Thor will be Denmark’s largest offshore wind farm to date. 

In order to connect the wind farm to the Danish grid, RWE has said that it will build two new substations – one at sea and one on land. The substation at sea will be the nerve centre of the wind farm: the electricity produced by the individual wind turbines is collected here and transformed to transmission-level voltage. The green electricity will be transported through export cables to the new-build onshore substation Volder Søndervang, which is located close to the coastline and the adjacent grid connection point of the Danish grid operator, Energinet. 

A corresponding grid connection agreement has already been signed between RWE and Energinet in spring, the statement added.

Furthermore, RWE has purchased the land in the municipality of Lemvig where the onshore substation will be located and have carried out ground conditions and archaeological surveys. Siemens Energy will commence design works, followed by the procurement of main equipment and the submission of permit applications. 

RWE said that construction activities can be expected to kick-off on site in spring 2023. Siemens Energy is planning to carry out the civil engineering and construction works together with MT Højgaard Danmark, one of Denmark’s leading companies for large-scale building and infrastructure projects, the statement said.

HSM Offshore Energy, together with its engineering subcontractor Iv-Offshore & Energy, has already successfully delivered several offshore substations for Energinet in the Danish North Sea. Based on its experience and technical know-how they created a highly efficient design for RWE’s Thor substation and its foundation, it continued. 

This design will reduce the use of structural steel and the energy needed during manufacturing – with steel sourcing and fabrication in Europe. Installation of the jacket foundation in water depth of up to 27 metres and installation of the substation are expected to take place in 2025 – followed by the commissioning and testing of the offshore substation in 2026.

Thor offshore wind farm will increase Denmark’s share of electricity produced from renewable energy sources and help to reduce the country’s carbon emissions, in line with the European Green Deal. Once fully operational, which is planned to be no later than 2027, RWE’s Thor wind farm would be capable of producing enough green electricity to supply the equivalent of more than one million Danish households.

For the operation and maintenance of the wind farm RWE has said that it will set-up a service base at the port of Thorsminde. RWE intends to contribute to the local economy and community by creating up to 60 permanent jobs in the long run. This includes technicians, engineers, nautical personnel as well as crew for the service vessels. 

It is expected that the new service station will be fully operational from 2026 onwards, with plans in place to support the wind farm for at least 30 years from this port.

The Thor project will help to support RWE’s goal to grow its global offshore wind capacity from 3 to 8 gigawatts by 2030. The company is already operating the Danish Rødsand 2 offshore wind farm, which is located south of the island of Lolland, which is approximately 10 kilometres southeast of Rødbyhavn. This wind farm has an installed capacity of 207 MW and has been in operation since 2010.

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