Project support Offshore Wind – Electrical
Converting wind energy into electrical energy is an important step, but initially only a first step towards enabling consumers to use a light bulb.
The complexity of the transformation process is characteristic. With the help of the internal park cabling, the energy is transported to the platform via the adjacent wind turbines. There the electrical voltage is increased by transformers. In some cases it is necessary to convert alternating current into direct current in order to bring the energy to shore via long cables. Here the energy can be fed into the existing network.
Cables are therefore of fundamental importance as the neural network of the wind farm. From the perspective of the acquisition costs, the cables generally only make up a very small proportion of the costs of the wind farm. On the other hand, the financial consequences of defects are much higher compared to wind turbines. In the event of damage to a wind turbine, only one of many fails. If the cables are damaged, several systems are directly affected.
During monitoring and maintenance, the focus is also on the mechanical and moving parts of the wind turbine and not on the cables buried in the ground. The fact that the cables are laid in the floor also means that repairs or even replacements in the event of damage are far more complex and expensive.
Therefore, when selecting components and suppliers, special attention must be paid to the highest quality and existing know-how. A careful selection process is essential for this. During manufacture, the foundation stone is laid for smooth operation for the life of the cable. If problems arise here, the feed-in of the entire wind farm is at risk.
For the cables of the inner park cabling, due to the short lengths and the time-consuming troubleshooting, the cable as a whole is often exchanged directly, and this process is also associated with considerable costs. This is not an option for export cables due to the length. A detailed troubleshooting of the cables buried in the seabed becomes inevitable.
Consequently, the underlying contract and the resulting consequences are of the utmost importance for procurement, processing and also in the event of an error. Liability clauses in the event of damage and serial damage as well as the question of consequential costs are particularly important here.
Furthermore, the platform in the wind farm is the elementary link between the wind farm and the transmission or distribution network.
The platforms are characterized by a complex interplay of various electrical and non-electrical components. Errors in this interaction are suitable for interrupting the feed-in to the entire wind farm. Thorough tests thus form the basis for smooth interaction between these components. In order to ensure this, a special focus must be placed on this when drafting the contract.
Furthermore, the described complexity often leads to costly delays. This has to be mitigated through a clear contract and professional project management.
In conclusion, it can be stated that professional management of the electrical packages is essential for the successful construction and operation of a wind farm. Contract management, in particular, portrays an important building block for the process that has just been carried out.
+49 (0) 40 6370730-0
Senior Contract & Claim Manager
+49 (0) 40 6370730-0