Gravity foundation trial set for Fecamp

FRANCE: A demonstrator of Seatower's crane-free gravity-based foundation, equipped with a Lidar met mast, will be lowered into the water at Le Havre in the coming weeks and towed to site of the 478MW Fécamp project, before the end of the year.

Alstom's 6MW Haliade turbine
Alstom's 6MW Haliade turbine

The consortium of EDF Energies Nouvelles, Dong Energy and WPD Offshore, which is developing the Fécamp project, contracted the met mast and foundation.

MT Højgaard is responsible for the marine works and installation, while French construction company Eiffage built the concrete and steel foundation. The project will consist of Alstom Haliade 6MW turbines.

The move was revealed by MT Højgaard offshore director Kim R Andersen. The aim is to demonstrate the innovative installation process, which Seatower claims will reduce costs and project risks.

The foundation will be towed to the site 13 kilometres off the coast by conventional tug boats supplied by Spain's Boluda Offshore, and lowered using seawater and sand in depths of nearly 30 metres.

Depending on the tug boats used, the process can be carried out in significant wave heights of up to three metres, Seatower CEO Petter Karal said.

No dredging or levelling is required, although Seatower has found that it is best to install the filter layer for the scour protection before the foundation arrives, Karal added.

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