Fugro develops innovative site investigation solution for Arklow Bank wind park

Source: press release, 19 August 2022

Understanding the site’s subsurface conditions: preparing a sample for core logging
Understanding the site’s subsurface conditions: preparing a sample for core logging (photo: Fugro)

Fugro has successfully completed fieldwork on a geotechnical site investigation for SSE Renewables’ Arklow Bank Wind Park Phase 2.

This offshore wind park will support Ireland’s climate action target of producing 7 GW of offshore wind energy by 2030 and is located approximately 6 to 13 km off the coast of Ireland, in an area known for its unpredictable metocean conditions. Fugro developed a bespoke casing system designed for the offshore site conditions to enable survey work to be completed with minimal downtime. The acquired Geo-data will be used to understand the site’s subsurface conditions and support foundation designs and installation.

Fugro also engineered a full suite of purposely designed conductor casing handling devices to remove manual intervention, improving health and safety of deck crew and ensuring deployment efficiency within the short slack water windows.

Laboratory testing is currently underway, building on the site testing completed in Fugro’s offshore laboratory, allowing all acquired samples to be analysed efficiently with the resulting Geo-data used to inform foundation designs. When complete, the 800 MW wind park will be capable of powering almost 850,000 homes with green energy and offset 830 billion kilograms of carbon emissions each year.

John O’Sullivan, SSE Renewables’ Arklow Bank Wind Park Phase 2 Project Manager says, “The successful completion of this ground investigation campaign is another key milestone for the Arklow project. It has enabled us to gain a much clearer understanding of the seabed conditions within the lease area. This enhanced site characterisation greatly supports our ongoing design development works in the lead up to the first offshore energy auction,”

Matthew Chappell, Fugro’s Service Line Director of Site Investigations says, “By working closely and collaboratively with SSE Renewables and DEME, who provided the Neptune liveaboard jack-up barge, we were able to deliver the perfect solution for the Arklow Bank Wind Park site investigation. Our experience in marine operations and geotechnical surveys allowed us to develop an innovative solution for the site conditions and is certainly something we’re proud of. Our Geo-data will not only reduce project risk and uncertainties but will help inform future developmental phases of the project.”