July 17 (Renewables Now) - Siemens AG (ETR:SIE) and Nexans (EPA:NEX) have secured contracts to supply equipment for the 900-MW DolWin6 grid connection for offshore wind farms in the German North Sea.
The contracts were awarded by Netherlands-based TenneT in tenders. The transmission system operator (TSO) said today that the cost of the whole project will be less than EUR 1 billion (USD 1.14bn) as the competitive process for contract awards has resulted in cost reductions. Previous platforms have cost more than a billion.
Siemens will supply the entire technology for the high-voltage direct-current transmission (HVDC). It said it will use for the first time DC CS direct-current compact switchgear. The gas-insulated switchgear for 320 kV requires much less space than current air-insulated solutions so it will allow for a roughly 10% reduction of the size of the offshore platform, which in turn lowers the cost of connection for offshore wind.
The switchgear is manufactured in Berlin, while the other components, such as HVDC transformers and converters for converting current, are produced in Siemens' plants in Nuremberg. The German company will also build the HVDC onshore station in Emden, East Frisia.
French firm Nexans (EPA:NEX), on the other hand, will produce, supply and lay the cables. That contract has saved Tennet EUR 100 million and includes two 320 kV DC cables, 45 km at sea and 45 km on land each.
The Gode Wind 3 project by Dong Energy A/S (CPH:DENERG) has already secured a contract for connection to DolWin6, while a number of other offshore wind projects are competing for such.
Spanish company Dragados Offshore SA is in charge of the construction and offshore installation of DolWin6, with commissioning planned for 2023.