Vattenfall has awarded Siemens Energy an order for 72 Model SWT-4.0-130 wind turbines for its new Sandbank offshore wind farm.
The project is being erected 90 kilometers west of the island of Sylt in water depths between 25 and 37 meters within the exclusive economic zone off the German North Sea coast.
A pioneering service plan for the project will generate synergy from its close vicinity to DanTysk offshore wind farm, utilizing joint operations to drive down the maintenance costs of both projects. Vattenfall has contracted Siemens to perform maintenance services on the Sandbank installations for an initial period of five years.
The 72 offshore wind turbines of the type SWT-4.0-130 for Sandbank offshore wind power plant will be rated at 4 megawatts each.
Service operations will center on a Service Operation Vessel (SOV) specially designed for these deployments. Following project commissioning, this specialized ship fitted with living accommodations for technicians and a workshop equipped with spare parts on board will take up position between the two wind farms. A helicopter will provide additional deployment readiness to enable crew to be ferried between land, the SOV and the wind turbines, irrespective of weather and sea conditions. DanTysk wind farm, already in an advanced stage of construction and likewise equipped with Siemens wind turbines of the G4 product platform, lies only 20 kilometers away. The permanent deployment readiness of the SOV and its use to both wind farms will enable particularly efficient operation owing to the short journey distances and high availability of both wind farms.
The wind turbines themselves will also contribute significantly to increasing efficiency and lowering costs at the Sandbank project. Siemens’ Model SWT-4.0-130 wind turbines ordered for the project represent the latest generation of the Siemens G4 platform wind turbines. They combine the proven technology of the most-built offshore wind turbine series – over 900 units worldwide rated at 3.6 megawatts are in operation – with a significantly enhanced power output of 4 megawatts at comparable maintenance costs. What is more, the unit’s rotor – measuring 130 meters in diameter – delivers optimum energy yield even at low and moderate wind speeds. The advanced rotor blades also contribute to efficiency: The 63-meter-long aeroelastic blades are designed to be flexible under high wind loads, and can therefore be manufactured with up to 20 percent reduced mass compared to conventional rotor blades. Hence, once commissioned at the end of 2016, Sandbank will count among the most modern offshore wind farms anywhere in the world. Construction is scheduled to commence in summer 2015.
“We are very pleased to be joining forces and pooling our shared experience again with Vattenfall to implement another major offshore project,” says Markus Tacke, CEO of Siemens Energy’s Wind Power Division. “Thanks to Vattenfall’s expertise in project construction and operation and Siemens’ innovative technology and service prowess, Sandbank will boldly demonstrate just how far we’ve come in reducing the costs of offshore wind power.”
“The Sandbank project is further testament to Vattenfall’s strategy of consistently focusing our growth efforts on the expansion of renewable energy,” says Gunnar Groebler, Head of the Renewables Business Unit for Vattenfall’s Continental/UK region. “We know how to work offshore and we see it as a significant building block in the success of the energy transition (Energiewende) in Germany. We are therefore delighted to have Siemens as an experienced partner for the building of the wind turbines on board again.”
Wind power and the associated service activities are part of Siemens’ Environmental Portfolio. Around 43 percent of the company’s revenues are generated by green products and solutions. That makes Siemens one of the world’s leading providers of eco-friendly technology.