June 13 (Renewables Now) - Dutch transmission system operator (TSO) TenneT Holding BV and German energy company Innogy SE (ETR:IGY) will study the potential of connecting offshore wind farms to interconnectors as part of a North Sea Wind Power Hub system.
The companies said today they have signed a letter of intent (LoI) to conduct the study and will initially explore feasible design options, the economic rationale and the regulatory and market requirements of the proposed international infrastructure.
The North Sea Wind Power Hub vision calls for connecting large-scale offshore wind power to one or more hubs in the North Sea and creating interconnectors to bordering North Sea countries. Currently, a consortium of TenneT Netherlands, TenneT Germany, Energinet, Gasunie and Port of Rotterdam is working on the project.
TenneT and Innogy said their investigation will focus on the opportunities for the large-scale deployment of offshore wind further off coast in the North Sea.
Innogy develops offshore wind projects and its pipeline includes the 860-MW Triton Knoll project in the UK and the 325-MW Kaskasi project in Germany.
"Connecting offshore wind projects into an independent transmission system creates the potential to feed into multiple markets," said Innogy Renewables chief operating officer Hans Buenting. "The main benefit will be the ability to supply consumers with larger volumes of cheap, predictable and low carbon offshore wind power well into the future," Buenting added.
Separately, TenneT said that together with Swedish utility Vattenfall AB it will assess the feasibility of connecting the offshore electrical infrastructure of a UK and Dutch offshore wind farm in order to trade electricity between the UK and the Netherlands.