JFMS provides offshore construction services on 714 MW offshore wind farm

ScottishPower Renewables turns to James Fisher Marine Services to provide a range of construction support at East Anglia ONE, affirming the company’s status as a leading provider of unique and flexible integrated services to the offshore renewables sector.

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Overview

ScottishPower Renewables (SPR) contracted the largest UK-owned marine services provider operating in the offshore wind sector, James Fisher Marine Services (JFMS) to deliver an integrated marine services package during the construction of its East Anglia ONE (EA1) windfarm.

EA1, a 300km2 windfarm constructed roughly 40km off the coast of Suffolk, consists of 102 wind turbines generating 714MW – enough to power 500,000 British homes. The first of four windfarms in the East Anglia area, SPR has plans to further expand its windfarm network by 2030.

 

Challenge

Situated approximately 40km off the east coast of Suffolk, EA1 lies in an area with some of the densest subsea munitions on the UK continental shelf, mostly confirmed as Allied and German air-and-sea-delivered WWII ordnance. With an estimated 10-20 percent of all bombs and mines that were dropped during the war failing to detonate and lying uncovered around the British coastline, this creates a significant challenge for offshore windfarm companies.

  

Solution

During the initial UXO campaign, 796 possible unexploded ordnance (UXO) targets were identified at EA1, with 69 items being confirmed as ‘live’ UXO. These were safely disposed of using the ‘Barracuda’ UXO disposal system, allowing the construction to continue in earnest and preventing the costly delays that mismanagement of UXO risks can lead to.

This project was the first in the UK to require bubble curtains for shallow water targets in order to comply with marine licensing. The system, supplied and deployed by JFMS, involves a technique that uses bubbles of air (gas) released from a perforated hose on the seabed in a circular arrangement around an item of UXO to be detonated, primarily to provide sound protection.

The construction phase of the project is in full swing with JFMS providing a comprehensive range of services, including guard vessel provision, installation and maintenance of offshore site boundary markers, Fern Communications WaveCom™ and marine coordination through its innovative Offshore Wind Management System (OWMS®).

Capable of providing real-time data, OWMS® has been successfully supporting the offshore crew at EA1 by making tracking more simple and efficient. Combined with WaveCom™ communications, the systems ensure the highest levels of site safety by being constantly aware of personnel, as well as offering economic benefits by removing the need to hire other vessels and offshore personnel for the same purposes.

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As a single-source supplier JFMS provides an integrated service, with ease of communication from a single point of contact, increasing project safety and speed of construction time.

In addition to its contractual services, JFMS has delivered extensive ad-hoc services including the procurement of equipment and materials and the mobilisation of a specialist team for the construction services scope.

In September EA1 generated its first power, a milestone in the project, with the first of the 102 planned turbines exporting power to the onshore substation at Burstall, near Bramford in Suffolk. Further turbines will now be commission at regular intervals, producing green energy for the entire country.

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