16th February 2011
Piling has started on the site of a new £35m wind turbine drive train testing facility at Narec in Northumberland. 292 piles will be drilled to 19m deep, ranging from 450mm diameter to 900mm diameter. When commissioned in summer 2013, the 15MW capacity test facility will be the most advanced of its type in the world, providing 6 degrees of freedom for applying load forces.
To provide sufficient support for the rig, a 43-metre by 12-metre test bed foundation will be constructed to a depth of 4m. This will be contained within a 32-metre high steel framed building constructed with 1300 tonnes of steel. The access door is 20m x 20m and 2 x 250 T cranes will lift test pieces into place.
Tony Quinn, Director of Major Projects and Assets at Narec, said: It’s great to see works starting on site for this world-leading facility, which will accelerate technology development and time to market for the UK offshore wind industry. It will provide Narec with a controlled environment to test the next generation of offshore turbines in accordance with international standards, before they are deployed in large numbers offshore.
The Energy Technologies Institute (ETI) is investing £25m in the Narec facility, by providing funding to GE Energy - Power Conversion and MTS Systems Corporation for the design, development and commissioning of the test rig.
Dr David Clarke, ETI Chief Executive, said: The test rig that will be housed on the Narec site is the biggest project to date commissioned by the ETI and has seen us invest over £25m in its design, development and commissioning. It will be a world leading large-scale engineering project and we look forward to the site being developed and taking shape over the next few months."
One North East invested £10 million in the building to house the rig.
Notes to Editors
- Narec is the UK’s national translational research centre for accelerating grid integration of renewable energy systems and catalysing the development and deployment of offshore wind, wave and tidal energy generation technologies.
- The 15MW drive train test facility will be commissioned in summer 2013. The ETI is investing £25m in the design, development and commissioning of the offshore wind test rig and One North East will invest £10 million in the building to house the rig.
- For further information please contact: Steve Abbott, Marketing and Communications Manager on 01670 357 621 / 07766 498 068 or email email@example.com
Energy Technologies Institute
- The Energy Technologies Institute is a UK based company formed from global industries and the UK Government. The ETI brings together projects and partnerships that create affordable, reliable, clean energy for heat, power, transport and associated infrastructure. For more information, please go to www.eti.co.uk
- The ETI’s six private sector members are BP, Caterpillar, EDF Energy, E.ON, Rolls-Royce and Shell. The ETI’s public funds are received from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills through the Technology Strategy Board and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). The ETI will accelerate the deployment of affordable, secure low-carbon energy systems from 2020 to 2050 by demonstrating technologies, developing knowledge, skills and supply-chains and informing the development of regulation, standards and policy.
- For further information please contact: ETI PR Manager Nigel Richardson on 01509 202084/07827 946064 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Additional Project Details
- Shepherd Construction is the lead contractor on site.
- The Architect on the project is Red Box Design Group, based in Newcastle upon Tyne, while the Structural and M&E services will be handled by Arup.
- Turner Townsend Turner has been appointed Project Manager on behalf of Narec.