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Load-out marks first stage of development at Dogger Bank

Innovative suction-installed wind turbine foundations on their way to Dogger Bank site, for first stage of construction at the world's largest offshore wind farm, 125 kilometres off the UK's east coast.

The innovative suction-installed foundations that represent the first stage of construction at the world's largest offshore wind farm are now on their way to the site at Dogger Bank, 125 kilometres off the UK's east coast.

The structures, known as Bucket Foundations, will support two meteorological masts that will provide essential weather information. They were developed by Danish firm Universal Foundation - a Fred. Olsen-related company - through The Carbon Trust's Offshore Wind Accelerator programme, which takes the best designs for offshore wind turbine foundations from design through to deployment.

"This is the first deployment of the Bucket Foundation in UK waters," said Phil De Villiers, head of the OWA programme. "We're excited about what this means for offshore wind development. The foundations represent 30% of the total cost of a wind farm. Reducing the capital and installation costs could really make an impact on the viability of future projects."

Dogger Bank is being developed by Forewind Limited - a consortium comprised of leading international energy companies RWE, SSE, Statkraft and Statoil. With agreements already in place for the development of six wind farms, the group hopes to have up to 9.6GW of output by 2020.

"This is certainly a momentous occasion for us," said Lee Clarke, Forewind project director and general manager. "The foundations will be the first structure put in place at the Dogger Bank site. It's a sign that this project is really beginning to take shape."

The met masts and foundations were fabricated by Fred. Olsen-related companies under an EPCI contract between Forewind and Fred. Olsen United. They are being ferried to the site from the new Harland and Wolff fabrication plant in Belfast by Fred. Olsen Windcarrier's 132m jack-up vessel Brave Tern. This was the inaugural job for the Brave Tern, which was built in Dubai last year.

"It's wonderful to see the Brave Tern and its cargo underway," said Fred. Olsen United project manager Lars Kjuul Kristensen. "We're so pleased to be playing a vital role right at the start of this major development."

The met masts themselves are set to be installed towards the middle of February.

Wind turbine bucket foundation transportationPhoto: Forewind/CHPV

About Forewind and Dogger Bank:

The international energy consortium Forewind is developing the largest tranche of the UK Government's Round 3 licence for offshore wind farms at Dogger Bank, more than 100 kilometres off the east coast of Yorkshire. The £3 bn project could potentially use thousands of wind turbines to generate as much as 10 percent of Britain's power needs. Installing meteorological masts is a key part of assessing available wind capacity.

For more information: http://www.forewind.co.uk/downloads/fact-sheets.html

Forewind Press Office:
Tel:  0118 955 6463
E-mail: Sue.Vincent@forewind.co.uk


About the Carbon Trust's Offshore Wind Accelerator:

Set up in 2008, the OWA is a joint industry project involving Vattenfall, E.ON, DONG Energy, Mainstream Renewable Power, RWE Innogy, ScottishPower Renewables, SSE Renewables, Statkraft and Statoil, which aims to reduce the cost of offshore wind by 10 percent by 2015. The OWA model brings together The Carbon Trust's expertise in delivering innovation and convening industry consortiums with the industrial partners' technical knowledge and resources. It is through both desk-based and demonstration projects that the OWA plans to commercialise innovative ideas in time for use on UK Round 3 wind farms.

The OWA is two-thirds funded by industry and one-third funded by the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC). For more information: www.carbontrust.com/our-clients/o/offshore-wind-accelerator

The Carbon Trust press office:
Tel: 020 7170 7050
E-mail: press@carbontrust.com