A new type of gravity base foundations developed by BAM for offshore wind turbines is set for its first use at EDF’s offshore wind demonstration project in Blyth.
BAM said that sealing the contract marks a very significant milestone for both their organisation and the wind energy sector in general.
Having been awarded the contract by EDF Energy Renewables, BAM has been appointed to install, fabricate and design five full size gravity base foundations for the wind turbines close to the Northumberland coast.
The design of the foundation will see the use of self-installing technology, developed by two of BAM’s companies â BAM Infra and BAM Nuttall, while BAM Infraconsult is undertaking the design.
Developed by BAM in conjunction with Van Oord Offshore Wind Projects, the technology will be used for the very first time when it is used in Blyth.
Initially, this project will be presented as a demonstration project that will seek to prove that such an approach is viable so that in the future gravity base foundations will be installed in wind farms of the future in the offshore environment.
All manufacturing for the project is to be conducted in Newcastle on the River Tyne, with a completion date for the project of summer next year.
The five steel and concrete bases will all have a 30 metre base diameter and the gravity base foundations (GBFs) are pre-made on-shore in a construction yard next to the quay, before they are then towed to the deployment site.
Once at the site, they are filled with water and taken down onto an already installed gravel bed. Once the GBF has reached the ground it is loaded with sand, ready for the instillation of the windmill on top.
At the Blyth project, a water depth of 40 metres will be set, with a weight of 13,000 tonnes.