Aker Solutions to Pilot Subsea Power System for Offshore Wind Farms in Norway
The Subsea Collector introduces an innovative approach to connecting multiple wind turbines electrically, employing a star configuration.
January 09, 2024. By Abha Rustagi
Under the agreement, Aker Solutions will introduce its cutting-edge power transmission technology, the Subsea Collector, to METCentre’s offshore wind test area. Currently, the test area features two floating offshore wind turbines situated 10 kilometers off the southwestern coast of Karmøy, Norway. Plans are underway to expand the test site to incorporate seven floating offshore wind turbines by 2026.
The Subsea Collector introduces an innovative approach to connecting multiple wind turbines electrically, employing a star configuration as opposed to the conventional daisy chain pattern.
This design enhances flexibility in offshore wind farm architecture, leading to reduced cable lengths per turbine and park, as well as decreased vessel time and installation costs. Preliminary findings suggest potential total cost savings of up to 10 percent for a 1 GW floating wind farm.
Key components of the Subsea Collector include a 66 kV wet mate connection system by Benestad and subsea switchgear with supervisory control and data acquisition provided by ABB, Aker Solutions' subsea power and automation alliance partner.
The installation of the system will be overseen by the Windstaller Alliance, a collaboration between Aker Solutions, DeepOcean, and Solstad Offshore. Furthermore, Aker Solutions will supply the static export cable to shore.
Jo Kjetil Krabbe, Executive Vice President of Power Solutions at Aker Solutions, emphasized the collaborative nature of the Subsea Collector project and said, "Combining Aker Solutions’ vast subsea experience with our partner’s proven control and connection systems, we aim to solve challenges currently facing the offshore wind sector. We hope this project will result in a field proven system that can benefit the industry for many years to come."
The METCentre meticulously assessed various configurations for its new cable infrastructure, ultimately opting for a pilot installation of Aker Solutions’ Subsea Collector to facilitate the test site's expansion.
Arvid Nesse, CEO of METCentre and Norwegian Offshore Wind, hailed the pioneering project as a significant contribution to shaping future large-scale floating wind parks.
The Subsea Collector, a first-of-its-kind system, draws on the success of similar technologies in large installation projects and leverages Aker Solutions' experience in subsea power solutions, including projects like Equinor’s Hywind Tampen.
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