The Norther Project

What is Norther?

Norther is an offshore wind farm – a total of 44 wind turbines – with a maximum capacity of 370 MW that will be built in the Belgian North Sea, within the Exclusive Economic Zone of Belgium, approximately 23 kilometres from the Belgian port of Zeebruges. The concession was granted at the end of 2009, which is when the actual development of the Project began.

 

The shareholders in this project are all parties with the necessary expertise and experience in developing renewable energy projects. Norther is ultimately owned by three parties: Belgian Elicio – a Belgian renewable energy producer operating internationally (50%), Dutch Eneco – a major producer and supplier of renewable electricity, natural gas and heat in the Netherlands and Belgium (25%) and also Diamond Generating Europe (25%).

Offshore wind is expected to be a key pillar of Belgium’s future energy mix and is projected to represent around 10% of total generated electricity by 2025.

Did you know?

The Norther wind farm will be built 23 km from the Belgian coast, within a zone southeast of the Thornton Bank, alongside the border with the Netherlands. It stretches out over a total surface of 44 square km. Each year, it will generate 1,394 GWh of sustainable energy, equal to the energy use of almost 400,000 families.

The Project

Location

The Norther windfarm is situated 23 km from the coast, southeast of the Thornton Bank alongside the border with the Netherlands.

The Norther Project is situated at the most southeastern part of the demarcated zone for wind farms as designated by the Royal Decree of May 17th 2004, modified by the Royal Decree of February 3rd 2011.

The northern border of the project area is situated at approximately 1 km from the concession domain of C-Power.

Did you know?

The development of The Norther Projects dates back to 2008 when a concession application was submitted by Air Energy, a subsidiary of Eneco. The concession was granted at the end of 2009, which is when the actual development of the Project began. The Norther windfarm will be built at approx. 23 km from the Belgian coast, within a zone southeast of the Thornton Bank, alongside the border with the Netherlands.

Who is Norther?

Norther benefits from experienced Sponsors with significant expertise, who have been able to provide project team members with highly relevant expertise from previous roles in both Belgian and non-Belgian projects .

Shareholders structure

Nethys SA is a 50% shareholder via its daughter company Elicio NV, a Belgian renewable energy producer operating internationally.

Nethys SA is owned by local municipalities of the Liege province (via Publifin, formerly named Tecteo Group) and is active in
energy, telecommunication and the industrial development sector.

Beyond Norther, the Nethys group is involved as shareholder (via Otary) in the Rentel, Seastar and Mermaid offshore wind projects in
Belgium, and Elicio was actively involved in the development of Northwind.

More info : www.elicio.be

Eneco: 25% shareholder via its daughter company Eneco Wind Belgium SA. Eneco is a major international producer and
supplier of electricity, natural gas and heat, involved in developing and operating sustainable energy projects
(including two operational offshore wind farms in the Netherlands – Princess Amalia and Luchterduinen).

Furthermore, Eneco will market 50% of the electricity output of the windfarm via a separate power purchase agreement

More info: www.eneco.be

Mitsubishi Corporation: 25% shareholder via its daughter company Diamond Generating Europe (DGE).

DGE is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corporation (“MC”). MC is a global integrated business enterprise that develops and operates businesses across virtually every industry, including industrial finance, energy, metals, machinery, chemicals, and daily living essentials. MC’s current activities have expanded far beyond its traditional trading operations to include investments and business management in diverse fields including natural resources development, manufacturing of industrial goods, retail, new energy, infrastructure, finance and new technology-related businesses.

More info: www.mitsubishicorp.com

Environment

The EU environmental policy is based on 2 main principles: first of all the reduction of CO2 and second the strengthening and growth of sustainable energy sources.

Offshore windpower can contribute significantly to achieving the EU goals of renewable electricity, halting global warming and reducing our dependence on coal, oil and gas. However, minimizing the environment and environmental impact of the construction works and operations is a key element for Norther.

In order to obtain this objective, an environmental monitoring programme will be setup in close collaboration with the MUMM to monitor and provide continued protection to vulnerable coastal and marine habitats.

A full Environmental Impact Assessment Report has been drawn up. All the related reports can be obtained from www.mumm.ac.be

 

In close cooperation with the MUMM (Management Unit of the North Sea Mathematical Models and the Scheldt estuary) which is part of the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, the installation and operation process will be continually monitored. Preventive actions will be taken to minimise the environmental impact during construction and operation.

Permits

All main permits required for the construction and operation of the wind farm have been obtained.

Technology

Wind Turbines

With the V164-8.0 MW, MHI Vestas Offshore Wind proposes a wind turbine generator (also referred to as WTG) designed for high efficiency and high reliability specially designed for and tested for the harsh conditions of the North Sea, benefitting from the lessons learnt from previous models and a high quality production process. The V164-8.0 MW has been designed to have a long structural design life, minimal maintenance requirements, and to allow for safe, cost-efficient servicing. The V164-8.0 MW has obtained an A-type certificate from Det Norske Veritas Germanische Lloyd (“DNV GL”) for the rotor and nacelle assembly.

The rotor of the V164-8.0 MW is three-bladed and mounted upwind of the tower. The power output is controlled by pitch regulation and the rotor speed is variable and designed to maximise the aerodynamic efficiency.
Its hybrid generator uses both a 3-phase synchronous generator as well as a permanent magnet rotor, and is connected to the grid through a full scale power converter. The WTG benefits from true variable speed, but with the higher rotational speed of the generator the volume of the permanent magnets can be limited. It thus combines the advantages of conventionally geared and direct drive WTG’s.
The  concept of the three stage differential gearbox is similar to MHI Vestas Offshore Wind previous designs for the V112-3.0 MW. The generator has also benefited from MHI Vestas Offshore Wind s experience, as windings and arrangement are similar to the V112-3.0 MW generator, but at a slower speed. Finally, with a horizontal split in the drive train, easy-access components, and the possibility of separately lifting out the main bearings,  coupling, gearbox and generator, the V164-8.0 MW design is geared towards maximum servicing efficiency.

The design of the medium-speed three stage differential gearbox is similar to MHI Vestas Offshore Wind previous designs for the V112-3.0 MW and the V90-3.0 MW platforms, without the high speed stage. The generator has also benefited from MHI Vestas Offshore Wind s experience, as windings and arrangement are similar to the V112-3.0 MW generator, but at a slower speed. MHI Vestas Offshore Wind has had problems with its gearboxes in the past and these are associated with the V90-3.0 MW WTG’s. It should be noted that by reverting to a medium speed gearbox in the V164-8.0 MW the risk of gearbox failures has significantly been reduced. Finally, with a horizontal split in the drive train, easy-access components, and the possibility of separately lifting out the main bearings, clutch, gearbox and generator, the V164-8.0 MW design is geared towards maximum servicing efficiency.

Building approach

MP Foundations

Monopile (MP) foundations have been installed across the vast majority of offshore wind farms and are considered proven technology. An MP foundation essentially consists of two major components: 1. the base tubular MP and 2. a tubular TP, which extends to approximately 17.5 metres above Lowest Astronomical Tide (LAT).

The use of an MP enables shorter fabrication periods, easier offshore logistics and installation periods and ultimately lower capital expenditure than jackets or tripods. Supply chain risks are also lowered as a range of experienced manufacturers in Western Europe can fabricate the required MP/TP structure. Furthermore, the offshore handling and transport of MPs can typically be more efficiently achieved than with jackets or tripods as a greater number of MPs can be positioned on the deck of the installation vessel or supply barge.

Norther intends to use a bolted flange connection between the MP and TP (Transition Piece) between seven and eight metres above LAT level. It is highly preferable to use bolted connections over grouted connections as slippage problems occur in some operational wind farms with cylindrical grouted connections.

Based on current estimations, MP weights are expected to vary between 670 and 963 tons with a diameter of 7.2-7.6 metres, depending on the individual WIND TURBINE GENERATOR location with an average weight of 795 tons and diameter of 7.4 metres. As can be seen from the table below the weights and diameters are well in line with market practice. This has to do with the location of the wind farm (close to shore, water depths 16-33m, and easy to penetrate the soil conditions (mainly sand).

Offshore High Voltage Station

All WTGs will be connected to the wind farm’s Offshore High Voltage Station, or OHVS, which will collect the electrical energy of the wind farm and transform it from 33 kV to 220 kV for export into the grid via the single export cable. The OHVS will be located southwest of the geographical centre of the wind farm area in a water depth of approximately 26.5 m, and will have a MP foundation, which has been commonly used for OHVS structures.

Inter-array cables

The WTGs will be connected to the OHVS through approximately 70 km of 33 kV aluminium AC subsea array cables with cross-sections between 185 mm² and 800 mm². Each inter-array cable consists of three power cores and one optical fibre unit for communication and control purpose.

Export Cable

The electrical energy generated by the WTGs and collected by the OHVS will be transported via a single 26 km, 220 kV AC submarine export cable to the Beach Pit. It will then be connected to the onshore cable by Elia, who will also install, own and operate this section along with the Stevin assets.

Timings

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Links

BELGIAN OFFSHORE PLATFORM

BOP combines the leading Belgian players who invest in renewable (wind) energy in the Belgian North Sea.
The BOP wants to support and boost the development of renewable energy by:

  • Representing the interests of its members to the government, utilities and other authorities
  • Urging the necessary conditions in order to obtain a maximum development of these energy systems
  • Informing the general public of and sensitizing them to the production of renewable (wind) energy in the North Sea
  • Exchanging international experience with other producers of renewable (wind) energy at sea
  • Researching on renewable (wind) energy generated at sea.

http://www.belgianoffshoreplatform.be

CREG

The CREG is the federal body regulating the gas and electricity market in Belgium and that advises the competent minister on the granting of concessions for wind farms in the North Sea.

http://www.creg.be

VREG

The VREG or Vlaamse Reguleringsinstantie voor de Elektriciteits- en de Gasmarkt (Flemish Electricity and Gas Market Regulator) is responsible for the regulation, the control and the promotion of transparency of the energy market in the Flemish Region.

http://www.vreg.be

Elia

Elia is Belgium’s high-voltage transmission system operator (30 kV to 380 kV), operating over 8,000 km of lines and underground cables throughout Belgium.

http://www.elia.be

ODE

ODE, the Organisation for Sustainable Energy, is the sector organization for renewable energy in Flanders. ODE brings together more than three hundred companies, research centres, universities and organizations in technology platforms and working groups, to exchange knowledge and promote their interests. ODE is the main stakeholder of renewable energy to the authorities concerned.

http://www.ode.be

 

MHI Vestas Offshore Wind

MHI Vestas Offshore Wind is a joint venture between Vestas Wind Systems A/S 50% and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) 50%. The company’s sole focus is to design, manufacture, install and service wind turbines for the offshore wind industry. The company aims to drive down the cost of energy from offshore wind parks by driving capital and operating savings, and increasing output of wind turbines by bringing the best technology to the market. The company is founded on collaboration, and creating powerful partnerships with key stakeholders will be the cornerstone of its business model.

http://www.mhivestasoffshore.com/products-services/

 

Van Oord

Van Oord is a leading global contractor in dredging, hydraulic engineering and offshore projects (oil, gas and wind). We are an innovative partner for our clients and have been contributing to the infrastructure of tomorrow’s world for over a hundred years. Our people are committed, enterprising professionals with a passion for water and technology.

http://www.vanoord.com

Contact Us

Headoffice & Administrative Office:

John Cordierlaan, 9
8400 Ostend
Belgium

BE 0896 052 742

Mail: info@norther.be

News & Media

News

1302, 2017

Mott MacDonald provides technical advisory to Norther offshore wind farm

February 13th, 2017|Comments Off on Mott MacDonald provides technical advisory to Norther offshore wind farm

17-01-17 Consultancy.UK

1302, 2017

WikiPage

February 13th, 2017|Comments Off on WikiPage

  Wiki Page  

3101, 2017

SIF Grote opdracht uit België

January 31st, 2017|Comments Off on SIF Grote opdracht uit België

31-01-17 NRC.NL

1512, 2016

SeeNews – Fin close, MHI Vestas deal for 370-MW Norther wind farm

December 15th, 2016|Comments Off on SeeNews – Fin close, MHI Vestas deal for 370-MW Norther wind farm

15-12-16 SeeNews

Media

1412, 2016

Belgium’s biggest offshore wind farm Norther has reached financial close and is ready to be built

December 14th, 2016|Comments Off on Belgium’s biggest offshore wind farm Norther has reached financial close and is ready to be built

Wednesday, December 14, 2016 — Key facts: The Norther project obtained its financial close and the construction phase can now start The project will supply green energy to about 400.000 households (equivalent) 44 wind turbines [...]

1802, 2016

MHI Vestas V164 selected as preferred supplier for Norther offshore windfarm

February 18th, 2016|Comments Off on MHI Vestas V164 selected as preferred supplier for Norther offshore windfarm

Belgian wind farm project Norther is pushing ahead. The selection of MVOW as the preferred supplier of V164-8 MW turbines marks an important milestone in the development of Norther. Norther with an awarded grid [...]

2005, 2011

4th offshore wind energy park ‘Norther’ unites Electrawinds and Air Energy

May 20th, 2011|Comments Off on 4th offshore wind energy park ‘Norther’ unites Electrawinds and Air Energy

Electrawinds takes a 50% wholesale mlb jerseys stake Ex- top man Thenergo made Project Manager Within the public limited company Norther NV – which won the fourth licensed concession for the construction and operation of [...]