The UK's National Renewable Energy Centre (Narec) has awarded a multi-million pounds contract to SeaRoc to install its Offshore Anemometry Hub.
The research facility will be installed three nautical miles off the coast of Blyth, Northumberland, next to the proposed nearest shore array of the 100MW capacity Blyth Offshore Wind Demonstration Site.
The Anemometry Hub has been fabricated on the River Tyne and includes a high specification research platform fitted with the latest technologies for measuring wind resource and collecting marine conditions and marine life data. It will begin measuring the wind resource for the proposed Blyth Offshore Wind Demonstration Site in October and this data will supplement the analysis of the conditions which has been undertaken over the last 2 years.
Andrew Mill, CEO of Narec, said: “This is fantastic timing for the project and the new facility will provide greater certainty of wind resource to enable Narec to leverage the additional investment that will make it a world-leading proving ground for next generation and cost reducing offshore wind technologies. Ours is the largest demonstration site in the UK and there is strong interest from prospective tenants to deploy prototypes as early as 2014.
“SeaRoc was selected to deliver the full installation service because of their proven track record in offshore renewables and ability to meet our project timescales. This is a one-off specialist engineering solution and we have been impressed with their innovative approach.”
A jack up vessel will be chartered by SeaRoc to load-out the tripod foundation, science platform and met mast tower sections from the Port of Tyne. Fully assembled, the structure will weigh over 700 tonnes and when lifted into place the meteorological mast will stand over 100m above sea level – the hub height of the next generation offshore wind turbines.
Toby Mead, Operations Director at SeaRoc, said: “The Blyth Offshore Wind Demonstration Site is key to the future of Offshore Wind, both in the UK and globally – SeaRoc are very aware of this and believe there is enormous value for the offshore renewable sector in the development of the Narec site. We view this project as an ideal opportunity to develop a strong working relationship with Narec.”
For more informationl, visit www.narec.co.uk