Saipem has installed the second unmanned high voltage direct current (HVDC) offshore substation platform at the 3.6GW Dogger Bank offshore wind project located in the UK North Sea.

Measuring 75m in length, 45m in width, and 39m in height, the platform employs a four-legged steel jacket foundation structure designed and fabricated by Saipem, installed in water depths of around 28m.

Its installation milestone marks the completion of the second platform out of three planned for deployment at the offshore wind facility, with each being supplied by Aibel.

Located more than 130km off the North East coast of England, the Dogger Bank project is being developed in three 1.2GW phases, namely Dogger Bank A, B, and C. Overall, the project will feature 277 offshore turbines.

The offshore wind project is being executed as a joint venture (JV) between Equinor (40%), SSE Renewables (40%), and Vårgrønn (20%), which in turn is owned by Eni Plenitude and Hitec Vision.

By leveraging its Saipem 7000 vessel, Saipem installed the platform 130km from the UK coastline at Dogger Bank B.

The unmanned HVDC offshore substation platform houses a Hitachi Energy HVDC system developed to transmit power more efficiently than traditional AC systems.

It will receive 1.2GW of AC power produced by the 95 offshore wind turbines of Dogger Bank B. Subsequently, the power will be converted to DC for transmission to an onshore converter station near Beverley in the East Riding of Yorkshire.

The first platform of the Dogger Bank offshore wind farm was deployed at the Dogger Bank A in April 2023. All three platforms will be remotely controlled from shore and will incorporate a streamlined design aimed at reducing weight by 70% per MW compared to previous platform designs.

Saipem offshore wind business line chief operating officer Gianalberto Secchi said: “We are proud to have contributed to the achievement of this important milestone for the groundbreaking Dogger Bank project, which reaffirms Saipem’s leadership in the offshore industry and our expertise in supporting Clients in the development of offshore wind farms as a key resource for the energy transition worldwide.”

Last month, the UK Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem) selected The EKITD consortium as the preferred bidder for the offshore transmission owner (OFTO) project of the Dogger Bank A offshore wind.

The consortium comprises funds managed by Equitix Investment Management and Kyuden Group, which includes Kyuden International and Kyushu Electric Power Transmission and Distribution.