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NGI hails suction bucket foundation milestone

suction bucket 2

NGI has said that work on installing the first of 20 offshore wind turbine foundations using suction bucket technology has successfully been completed on Ørsted’s Borkum Riffgrund 2 offshore wind farm in the German sector of the North Sea.

NGI is working on the scheme with Framo and Geosea, which is the first by Ørsted to use this type of foundation on a large scale.

“Building on more than 40 years of experience in foundation design for offshore structures, NGI has actively and successfully transferred well-proven technology from oil and gas, to offshore wind,” said NGI director of offshore energy Thomas Langford. “The successful installation of the suction bucket foundations on behalf of Ørsted is a milestone for NGI, and for the offshore wind business in general.

“The suction bucket jacket technology for offshore wind farms has gone from concept to reality during the last five years. Besides lowering costs due to the increased installation speeds compared to traditionally piled jackets, the concept provides for easier decommissioning and practically noise free installation.”

suction bucket 1

suction bucket 1

The suction buckets each weigh 950t and are 50m high

Work on the current wind farm follows on from trials of a full-scale prototype suction bucket foundation installed by Ørsted and NGI in 2014 on the first phase of the Borkum Riffgrund development. NGI installed comprehensive instrumentation for that project and the measurements have been used to develop the concept applied to the current Borkum Riffgrund 2 wind farm.

“This second installation is the next step for maturing the concept to be industrially applicable,” said Ørsted country manager for Germany Volker Malmen. “This progress exemplifies the competitiveness and sustainability of offshore wind.”

NGI has said that work to install all 20 of the 50m high, 950t suction bucket foundations will take several months.

The remainder of the 59 wind turbines at Borkum Riffgrund 2 will be supported by monopile foundations.

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