ABB, a power and automation technology group, has won a significant order to provide substations and related power infrastructure for the Rampion Offshore Wind Farm. ABB will provide power infrastructure for the offshore platform as well as the onshore substation to efficiently integrate the new wind farm into the country’s transmission grid. ABB will also extend an existing substation that will receive the wind power. The wind farm is scheduled for completion in 2018.
The 400 Megawatt (MW) project is being built by energy company E.ON, in partnership with the UK Green Investment Bank plc (GIB).The wind farm will be situated off the Sussex coast between Worthing and Brighton and will include 116 turbines, with the nearest located 13 kilometers from shore. When complete, the wind farm will have the capability to generate electricity for around 300,000 homes and reduce CO2 emissions by up to 600,000 tonnes a year.
The wind farm’s 400MW of installed electrical capacity will contribute to the United Kingdom’s (UK) target of achieving 15% of its total energy production from renewable sources by 2020 and reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Europe now has around 8 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind power connected to the grid. UK is the leading contributor, accounting for nearly half the installed capacity and a further 11.9 GW of offshore capacity under construction or with planning approval.
“These substations will help integrate wind energy and facilitate the reliable and efficient transmission of clean power,” said Claudio Facchin, president of ABB’s Power Systems division. “We are pleased to contribute with our innovative technologies and proven project execution experience to support the enhancement of renewables in the U.K.’s energy mix and the strengthening of the power infrastructure. This order is another example of our Next Level Strategy and our focus on profitable growth.”
As part of the order scope, ABB will be responsible for the turnkey delivery of the onshore substation, including high-voltage air-insulated switchgear (AIS), gas-insulated switchgear (GIS), transformers and substation automation as well as control and protection systems.
The onshore substation will also be equipped with four STATCOM (static compensator) units to ensure grid stability. These will provide reactive power compensation by detecting and instantly compensating for voltage fluctuations associated with the intermittent nature of wind energy.
ABB will also supply medium-voltage switchgear, power transformers and protection and control systems for the offshore platform as well as two new switchgear bays with control and protection equipment for the National Grid’s nearby substation at Bolney, receiving power from the new wind farm. The solution ensures that stringent grid code standards are met.