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Danish engineers enter the Chinese market for offshore wind

Published:  25 May, 2016

The Danish engineering and consultancy company Ramboll will be the first non-Chinese company to design a 400 MW wind farm in China, which will be among the country’s largest.

Wind and solar power is increasingly becoming a part of China’s future energy supply and the construction of offshore wind is on the rise. China is now constructing one of its 10 first offshore wind farms, consisting of 100 turbines with a capacity of 400 megawatts, which amounts to the total energy consumption of 35,000 households or the production of a small coal-fired power plant. The SPIC Binhai North Phase 2 Offshore Wind Farm in the Jiangsu province, five hours north of Shanghai, will be one of China’s largest.

Ramboll will, as the first non-Chinese company, be designing the wind farm. The contract of more than EUR 4 million includes design of the 100 steel turbine foundations, the 400 MW substation, concept for the transformers, breakers and cables, as well as developing the design basis for waves, currents and geotechnical conditions. The project is a continuation of phase 1, where Ramboll was the head designer of the turbine foundations. This will be the first time a single consultant on an offshore wind farm will design this large part of the total project.

The wind farm will be located 22 km off the coast in an area prone to earthquakes and very soft soil-conditions, where the seabed consists of deposits washed out by the large rivers, which poses a high risk of soil liquefaction. This puts unique demands on the design and construction of the foundations that will be placed 60 m below sea bed, in order to support the turbines in depths of 14-18 m.

China is currently planning to install 15-20 gigawatts of offshore wind energy before the end of 2020, which amounts to 40-50 wind farms the size of the recent Anholt Wind Farm in Denmark.

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