The Anonymous Widower

The Caledonia Wind Farm

Another of the ScotWind wind farms, that I described in ScotWind Offshore Wind Leasing Delivers Major Boost To Scotland’s Net Zero Aspirations, has been given a name and a web site.

This map shows the various ScotWind leases.

Note, that the numbers are Scotwind’s lease number in their documents.

9 is now Caledonia.

  • It has grown from a 1,000 MW fixed foundation wind farm and is now 2,000 MW.
  • A completion date of 2030 is now given.

The wind farm will be the fourth development in the area, after the 598 MW Beatrice, the 950 MW Moray East and the 882 MW Moray West wind farms. That is a total of nearly 4,500 MW.

Caledonia’s Unique Advantages

On the About Caledonia page on the Caledonia Wind Farm web site, there is a section called Caledonia’s Unique Advantages, which has four sections.

Water Depths

Caledonia’s water depths are 40 to 100 m. Three-quarters of the site is at depths that allow for fixed (rather than floating) foundations.

This means the majority of the site can be built using the same type of jacket foundations which Ocean Winds optimised at Moray East, seeing Caledonia implement a proven, low-risk, low-cost engineering solution.

Wind

The wind resource at Caledonia is proven through the experience of previous projects and is of a magnitude more usually associated with deeper waters, further from shore. This means Caledonia will benefit from an excellent wind resource, yielding a higher output at lower costs.

Distance from Shore

Caledonia is around 40km from shore and 70km from the nearest National Grid connection point. Beyond distances of approx 120km, DC technology becomes a necessity for subsea transmission. This means the additional costs associated with installing AC-DC convertors offshore and DC-AC convertors onshore can be avoided and the onshore substation will be smaller so will require less land and have a lesser impact on the surrounding environment.

Environment

The Moray Firth is the home of commercial-scale offshore wind generation in Scotland. Caledonia neighbours the Moray East, Moray West, and Beatrice sites, and Ocean Winds have had a presence here from the beginning of the area’s offshore wind development.

Conclusion

It does appear that if you do your planning well on projects like these, there are benefits to be reaped in terms of size, construction, capacity and financial returns.

November 21, 2022 Posted by | Energy | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Three Shetland ScotWind Projects Announced

The title of this post, is the same as that of this press release on Crown Estate Scotland.

These three paragraphs outline how the leases were allocated.

Three projects will be offered seabed agreements for offshore wind projects following Crown Estate Scotland’s ScotWind clearing process.

The announcement comes as an offshore wind supply chain summit is held in Aberdeen today (22 August) with Sir Ian Wood, chaired by Michael Matheson MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Energy, and including a keynote address by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon MSP. 

Clearing saw the ‘NE1’ area east of Shetland made available for ScotWind applicants who met the required standards but who did not secure their chosen location earlier in the leasing process.

I think it was good idea to offer these leases to those bidders that failed to get a lease, the first time around, despite meeting the standards.

  • Would it encourage bidders, if they knew that after the expense of setting up a bid, that if they failed, they could have another chance?
  • It must also save the Scottish Government time and money checking out bidders.
  • How many times have you interviewed several applicants for a job and then found jobs for some of those, that you didn’t choose for the original job?

Let’s hope the philosophy has generated some good extra contracts.

This map from Cross Estate Scot;and shows all the contracts.

Note the three new leases numbered 18, 19 and 20 to the East of Shetland, in the North-East corner of the map.

Their details are as follows.

  • 18 – Ocean Winds – 500 MW
  • 19 – Mainstream Renewable Power  – 1800 MW
  • 20 – ESB Asset Development – 500 MW

Note.

All are floating wind farms.

  1. Ocean Winds is a Spanish renewable energy company that is developing the Moray West and Moray East wind farms.
  2. Mainstream Renewable Power appear to be a well-financed and ambitious company, 75 % owned by Aker.
  3. ESB Energy appear to be an experienced energy company owned by the Irish state, who operate several wind farms and Carrington gas-fired power station in the UK.

2.8 GW would appear to be a generous second helping.

Ocean Winds and Mainstream Renewable Power

This web page on the Ocean Winds web site, is entitled Ocean Winds Designated Preferred Bidder For Seabed Leases For 2.3 GW Of Floating Projects East Of Shetland, Scotland, contains several snippets of useful information.

  • Crown Estate Scotland announced the result of ScotWind Leasing round clearing process, awarding Ocean Winds with two seabed leases for floating offshore wind projects: a 1.8 GW capacity site with partner Mainstream Renewable Power, and another 500 MW capacity site, east of the Shetland Islands.
  • Ocean Winds’ international portfolio of projects now reaches 14.5 GW of gross capacity, including 6.1 GW in Scotland.
  • Floating wind turbines for the two adjacent sites are confirmed, because of the water depth.
  • The partners are committed to developing floating offshore wind on an industrial scale in Scotland, generating local jobs and opportunities in Scotland and the Shetland Islands.
  • From the picture on the web page, it looks like WindFloat technology will be used.
  • Ocean Winds developed the WindFloat Atlantic project.

Ocean Winds appear to want to go places.

The Shetland HVDC Connection

The Shetland HVDC Connection will connect Shetland to Scotland.

  • It will be 160 miles long.
  • It will have a capacity of 600 MW.
  • It is estimated that it will cost more than £600 million.
  • It will allow the 66MW Lerwick power station to close.
  • It will be completed in 2024.

I have a feeling that all these numbers don’t add up to a sensible answer.

Consider.

  • The three offshore wind farms can generate up to 2800 MW of green electricity.
  • With a capacity factor of 50 %, an average of 1400 MW of electricity will be generated.
  • The Viking onshore wind farm on Shetland could generate up to 450 MW.
  • More wind farms are likely in and around Shetland.
  • Lerwick power station can probably power most of the Shetland’s needs.
  • Lerwick power station is likely to be closed soon.
  • Sullum Voe Terminal has its own 100 MW gas-turbine power station.
  • Load is balanced on Shetland by 3MWh of advanced lead-acid batteries.
  • Lerwick has a district heating scheme.

If we assume that Shetland’s energy needs are of the order of a few hundred MW, it looks like at times the wind farms will be generating more electricity, than Shetland and the Shetland HVDC Connection can handle.

Various plans have suggested building electrolysers on Shetland to create hydrogen.

Conversion of excess electricity to hydrogen, would have the following advantages.

  • The hydrogen could be used for local heavy transport and to replace diesel.
  • Hydrogen could be used to fuel a gas turbine back-up power station, when needed.
  • Hydrogen could be used for rocket fuel, if use of Shetland as a Spaceport for launching satellites takes off.

Any excess hydrogen could be exported to the rest of the UK or Europe.

 

August 24, 2022 Posted by | Energy, Hydrogen | , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments