McDermott Scores Largest-Ever Renewables Contract

McDermott Scores Largest-Ever Renewables Contract
McDermott has been awarded its largest-ever renewable energy contract from TenneT for the BorWin6 980MW high-voltage, direct current project.

U.S. engineering company McDermott International has been awarded its largest-ever renewable energy contract from TenneT for the BorWin6 980MW High-Voltage, Direct Current (HVDC) project.

Through a consortium with Global Energy Interconnection Research Institute and C-EPRI Electric Power Engineering (GEIRI and C-EPRI), McDermott will provide engineering, procurement, construction, installation, and commissioning (EPCIC) services. 

McDermott said that the project was for the design, manufacture, installation, and commissioning of an HVDC offshore converter platform, located 118 miles offshore Germany on the Platform North Sea Cluster 7 in a water depth up to 131 feet.

Electricity generated from offshore wind farms will be converted into direct current and transported to an onshore converter station located 28 miles onshore near Büttel, Germany.

"This major EPCIC award elevates our growing energy transition portfolio and signifies our expansion into the thriving offshore wind market, further strengthening our global ambitions in the renewables sector," said Samik Mukherjee, McDermott's EVP and COO.

McDermott will lead the consortium through an integrated execution model utilizing its extensive global engineering centers and strategically located fabrication yards.

"Our integrated EPCIC delivery model, combined with nearly a century of experience executing some of the most challenging offshore projects in the world, make us ideally suited to support TenneT on this important offshore grid connection project," said Tareq Kawash, McDermott's SVP for Europe, Middle East, and Africa.

"Additionally, our HVDC Center of Excellence in The Hague is strategically positioned to lead our execution delivery in the European market," Kawash added.

On the HVDC offshore platform, McDermott's scope includes the engineering, procurement, fabrication, transport, installation, and commissioning of the topside module and jacket. On the onshore converter station, McDermott's scope includes engineering, procurement, construction, and commissioning.

GEIRI / C-EPRI's scope includes the engineering, manufacture, supply, installation supervision, and commissioning of the HVDC system for the onshore and offshore converter stations.

The engineering and project management will be executed from McDermott's center in The Hague with support from its Chennai and Gurgaon offices. The fabrication of the topside is planned to be executed by the Qingdao McDermott Wuchuan facility in China while the jacket will be made in the company’s Batam fabrication yard in Indonesia.

"Concerning the high expansion targets for offshore wind energy in the North Sea, we are pleased that an international consortium was able to prevail in our tendering procedure. Even though this consortium is new to us, it has a lot of experience in the offshore as well as the HVDC business," said Tim Meyerjürgens, COO of TenneT.

The direct connection principle used for BorWin6 means that TenneT connects the wind turbines directly to its BorWin Kappa offshore platform via 66-kilovolt three-phase cables. This eliminates the need for transformer stations previously needed on every wind farm. Economically speaking, this innovative technology leads to enormous cost savings.

"With the award of BorWin6, we are continuing the ongoing cost reduction in the construction of offshore grid connection systems. We are also applying the smart platform concept by installing particularly low-maintenance technology on the offshore platform. This enables us to reduce the maintenance effort and ultimately the operating costs of the asset,” Meyerjürgens added.

On a 145-mile-long route, TenneT transmits electricity via underground cable from the offshore converter station as direct current to the converter station in Büttel on land. Here, the direct current is converted back into a three-phase alternating current and fed into the extra-high voltage grid.

BorWin6, scheduled to go into operation in 2027, is the last offshore grid connection system to be implemented by TenneT in the German North Sea with 320-kilovolt technology. The technological leap to 525-kilovolt and a transmission capacity of two gigawatts will be implemented in future projects.

According to TenneT, the contract for the second lot – for the production and laying of the cables – will be awarded before the end of this year.

The actual construction of the land station will begin in 2024, construction of the topside is expected to start in mid-2023, the jacket construction will start at the end of 2023. The jacket and platform will be placed on location in mid-2026.

In 2023, horizontal drillings are also planned to underpass the land protection dike and the Kiel Canal. The land cable will be laid in 2024 and 2025 while the subsea cable will be laid in 2025 and 2026.

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