Geotechnical investigations contracts awarded on major wind farm project

Fugro Scout

FUGRO and Ocean Infinity have sealed contracts for geotechnical investigations on a project to deliver one of the world’s largest floating offshore wind farms.

The Ossian floating wind farm is being built in waters off the east coast of Scotland near Angus, with the project set to allow for up to six million homes to be powered and the offset of up to 7.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions each year.

The project is being delivered by a partnership of Scottish renewable energy developer, SSE Renewables; alongside Japenese conglomerate, Marubeni Corporation; and Danish fund management company, Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP).

Fugro will focus on downhole geotechnical sampling and in situ cone penetration testing, whilst Ocean Infinity will focus on the seabed scope which will include shallow vibro-cores and deep push seabed cone penetration tests.

SSE Renewables offshore geotechnical technical authority, John Davidson, said “This is a major step forward in the exploratory work needed to make the Ossian Wind Farm a reality. After a competitive tendering process, it was clear that Fugro and Ocean Infinity have the skills, equipment, knowledge and expertise to embark on a survey of this scale.

“The Ossian team look forward to working with both companies and to realising the geotechnical investigation results which will be integral to the progression of what would be a world-leading floating wind project.”

Fugro plans to use its purpose-built geotechnical drilling vessel, the Fugro Scout. The ship is equipped with ultra-deepwater drilling technology and onboard systems which enable the vessel to safely carry out complex marine geotechnical operations.

Stril Explorer

Meanwhile, Ocean Infinity plans to use its vessel, Stril Explorer, which is a multi-purpose support vessel with seabed geotechnical equipment.

Marscha de Bruijn, project manager for Fugro, added, “We are excited to support project partners, SSE Renewables, Marubeni Corporation and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners with the development of the Ossian wind farm. Our global expertise, resources and technical capabilities will be used to provide superior Geo-data on the soil conditions below the seafloor to help inform future designs and add value to the project.”

Nils Ingvarson, chief commercial officer at Ocean Infinity, commented, “We are thrilled to have been chosen by the project partners to support the Ossian wind farm development. We are committed to contributing to a more sustainable future and as such are very proud that our geotechnical services will play a significant role in the work needed to make this new floating wind farm a reality.”

Both surveys will commence this spring. Ocean Infinity said it expects to have completed survey work by the end of May, while Fugro expects its downhole scope survey to be completed at the start of July.

SSE Renewables added that the surveys will ‘significantly’ improve the seabed understanding across the project site by ground-truthing the already acquired geophysical information. This will subsequently enable design development activities to progress such as anchor in-place and installation design.