As a rapidly growing production and test hub, Aalborg is a prominent player in the international wind energy industry. Several international frontrunners in the sector are located at the port, which also features the largest concentration of blade testing facilities in the world. On a global level, players in the wind energy industry turn to Aalborg when they require knowledge, developing technologies and skilled labour.
The latest evidence of Aalborg’s prominence is an enormous project that has just commenced in Aalborg. In the coming years, the steel producer Bladt Industries and the construction company Semco Maritime will jointly manufacture five 880 MW transformer stations that will comprise the central components of massive international offshore wind energy projects. Moreover, these stations shall be manufactured at the East Port.
– Over the years, Aalborg and North Jutland have positioned themselves as a crucial stronghold for the wind energy industry, where we, along with suppliers and subcontractors such as Bladt, Siemens Gamesa, BLAEST, AAU, Test Centre Østerild and many others, have built a formidable value chain that is unrivalled in the wind energy sector. Bladt Industries and Semco Maritime’s project is also testament to this, which we can be immensely proud of, says Kristian Thulesen Dahl, CEO, Port of Aalborg.
The project is the 21st joint project between the two companies since 2003, and Port of Aalborg is very excited about this close collaboration which, extends far beyond this specific task.
– This project is fantastic for commercial development at the port. When some of the local actors play such an important role in the development of green wind energy and locate their production in Aalborg, it is an expression of our adeptness to create the optimal conditions for innovative actors, who contribute to green growth and new jobs in the area. Consequently, we go to great lengths to ensure the success of such projects, says Kristian Thulesen Dahl.
Significant expansion of the area and infrastructure
Port of Aalborg has dedicated a 110,000 m2 extra-large space to the project, equivalent to approximately 15 full-size football pitches. As you drive through the roundabout at Tranholmvej and Rørdalsvej in the East Port, you can see that the preparation of the massive site is already in full swing.
– Right now, we are working closely with Port of Aalborg on the preparation of the site here at the port. 60,000 m2 shall be used for the manufacturing of the upcoming transformer stations with full infrastructure both above and below the ground. The additional 50,000 m2 will be used for storage and assembly of large parts, says Søren Schlott Mikkelsen, VP Operations Management Office, Bladt Industries.
Each transformer station weighs between 2,500 and 4,500 tonnes and is quite sizable. As part of the project, the width of the road to the quay is being extended to 30 metres and completely asphalted to facilitate transportation of the finished transformer stations directly to the quayside without having to pass through the production area. Likewise, the platform on the quay is expanded so that they can be driven directly onboard the ships and the depth of the water at the quayside is also increased from 9.7 metres to 11 metres.
– We are both humbled and proud to be awarded this undertaking, as it is marked recognition of our skills and know-how. We have some of the most skilled specialists in our field who already have extensive experience with transformer stations. Although this is not the first time we shall manufacture transformer stations, this task is somewhat special because of its sheer scale and scope, says Søren Schlott Mikkelsen.
Manufacturing of the transformer stations is scheduled to commence in the autumn, when the raw steel structures arrive in Aalborg. Additionally, Bladt Industries will also produce 176 so-called transition pieces for the same project.
For further information, please contact:
- Kristian Thulesen Dahl, CEO, Port of Aalborg A/S, tel. 99 30 15 01 and email@example.com
- Rikke Tikjøb Christiansen, Chief People & Transformation Officer, Bladt Industries A/S, tel. 40 83 75 83 and firstname.lastname@example.org
- Press service: Maja Thordahl Schou, Head of PR, Port of Aalborg A/S, tel. 22 61 83 08 and email@example.com
What is an offshore transformer station?
Offshore transformer stations (also called offshore substations) are critical components of large offshore wind farms. The transformer stations are erected at sea and receive the power produced by the wind turbine generators and then transmit it via power cables. When the current reaches the transformer station, the electricity is converted to a higher voltage and subsequently sent ashore via high-voltage cables. The cables are connected to the onshore infrastructure and from there into the electricity grid and out to the end user.