Van Oord installs Gemini wind power project’s first monopile

Van Oord’s offshore installation vessel Aeolus has successfully installed Gemini wind power project’s first monopile. The offshore wind project, one of the largest in the world, will consist of 150 monopiles. The project is expected to be fully operational by 2017 generating clean and renewable energy for 1.5 million people in the Netherlands.

Gemini is being built in the North Sea. The project consists of two areas of 34 km2 and is located 85 km off the coast of Groningen. Each monopile is designed for its specific location in the wind project. Depending on water depth, they vary in length from 59 to 73 m. The monopiles have a diameter of 7 m, and a wall thickness of 7 to 11 cm. During the three-year construction period, a wide range of equipment including Van Oord’s specialized offshore wind vessels will be deployed. An estimated workforce of 500 will be involved on the project.

Pieter van Oord, CEO: ‘We are pleased that after fourteen months following the financial close, the first Gemini monopiles are being hammered into the seabed, exactly as per the original planning.’

Four project partners have joined forces to make Gemini a reality: Canadian independent renewable energy company Northland Power (60% project interest), wind turbine manufacturer Siemens Wind Power (20%), Dutch maritime contractor Van Oord (10%) and renewable energy, waste and raw materials company HVC (10%).