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Siemens wins maintenance contracts for offshore electric grid connections in the North Sea
Successful entry into the maintenance market for German offshore wind farm connections
"The BorWin 2 and HelWin1 projects for integration of the offshore wind farms Veja Mate, Global Tech I and Nordsee Ost into the onshore high-voltage transmission grid will benefit from our many years of experience in this field. As the undisputed market leader, we have so far received orders for connecting offshore wind farms with a rating totaling approximately 4,800 megawatts. Now we are going to aggressively develop our maintenance business in this field as well", says Dr. Udo Niehage, CEO of the Power Transmission Division within the Energy Sector at Siemens.
The services covered by the contract include preparing the maintenance schedules, coordinating and executing inspections, preventive maintenances and repairs, and providing the related logistics and spare parts management services. To ensure fast customer response, Siemens will set up a service base in Lower Saxony close to the coastline and will staff it with highly qualified personnel. The wind farms are located between 85 and 125 kilometers offshore, to the north-west of the islands of Borkum and Helgoland, and pose special challenges in terms of maintenance and logistics due to their exposure to a harsh maritime environment. The BorWin2 grid connection will have a transmission capacity of up to 800 megawatts (MW) of clean electric power, HelWin1 a capacity of 576 MW. Both connections will be built using high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission technology with submarine cables, and are scheduled to be ready for operation in 2013.
Using HVDC technology reduces transmission losses significantly. High-voltage cable links more than 80 kilometers long require HVDC for power transmission due to the fact that a major portion of the electrical energy would be lost as reactive power with an AC connection of that length and power rating. Siemens has developed HVDC Plus for precisely such applications. This modular VSC technology reduces the complexity and thus the installation space needed at offshore platforms.
Siemens will carry out the maintenance of the offshore platforms and the onshore stations of the grid connections BorWin2 and HelWin1 on behalf of transmission system operator TenneT for a minimum period of five years. Siemens will establish a service base located in Lower Saxony close to the coastline. The offshore grid connection system in highvoltage direct current (HVDC) transmission technology will be built by Siemens to connect three North Sea wind farms to the mainland grid. With the orders for the maintenance of the offshore grid connection systems Siemens thus further expands its comprehensive operation & maintenance service portfolio for electricity network infrastructures and extends its undisputable lead in offshore grid connection solutions.
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