Ecole Centrale de Nantes ready to supply its first kWhs to French electrical grid.

Specialist marine consultancy and project management division of James Fisher Marine Services (JFMS), Mojo Maritime, has completed an operation for Ecole Centrale de Nantes meaning Floatgen is now ready to supply energy from its SEM-REV marine energy test site.

Ecole Centrale de Nantes and Mojo Maritime teams worked 24/7 at the Floatgen floating wind turbine, which is one of the few prototypes installed in the world today, to replace a defective connection box which was preventing an electrical connection to marine energy (wind and wave) converters.

Ecole Centrale de Nantes installed the subsea connection hub, to which three demonstrators can connect simultaneously on the SEM-REV site two years ago. Since then, projects have queued up to access one of the few multi-technology test sites in the world.

However, final validation checks on the connection revealed an insulation defect on one of the phases of the 25km-long underwater cable, which had to be repaired to ensure it wouldn’t jeopardize future projects and was ready to supply energy to the French electrical grid.

It has taken eighteen months of intensive research to pinpoint the exact location, thanks to advanced technologies based on electrical echometry and acoustics, implemented by teams from ENEDIS and EDF Energy.

Ecole Centrale de Nantes drew on the expertise of Mojo Maritime, a subsidiary of JFMS which is well established in the marine renewables sector. An imposing offshore construction vessel, the Ariadne, was chartered for the successful operation that lasted five days. The 8MW electrical connection is now operational and will start supplying its first kWhs this summer.

Mojo Maritime France Project Manager, Maxime Morandeau, said:

“It’s been an absolute pleasure to work with Ecole Centrale de Nantes on this project. To optimise operations we used Mermaid® for accurate modelling and scenario planning, which reduces the risk of any unexpected situations or costs, and meant that the project was completed according to plan.”

The SEM-REV contract is a continuation of Mojo Maritime’s involvement in the marine renewable energy industry in France, which notably includes the successful completion of the technically complex Sabella tidal device project near Ushant Island.