Pioneering wind project first to finish crucial data gathering

01/11/2023
On deck with Ossian

OSSIAN has become the first ScotWind floating offshore wind farm to complete essential geotechnical surveys. Set to be located across 858km² of seabed off the east coast of Scotland, the project at capacity will have the potential to produce up to 3.6GW of energy, enough to power up to six million homes. 

Detailed geotechnical surveys have been on-going since the spring, providing data and samples key to understanding the engineering properties of the seabed across the vast site. Completing the exploratory work is a major milestone for the world leading project and marks the beginning of a new era for renewable energy.  

Senior project manager, David Willson said: “The scale of Ossian is globally significant and the information gathered from these surveys brings us another step closer to making it a reality. 

“We are the first large scale floating offshore wind farm to reach this milestone and are pleased with the progress that’s been made.  

“Along with other ScotWind developers, Ossian also recently completed a two-year digital aerial survey of 75,000 birds across the North Sea. 

“The pace at which the project has begun will ensure Ossian is able to advance as quickly as possible and contribute to the journey to net zero.” 

Ossian is a joint venture between SSE Renewables, Marubeni and CIP. The site’s seabed is around 72m below sea level and is located 84kms off the east coast of Scotland.  

The geotechnical surveys carried out by contractors Fugro and Ocean Infinity have delivered information essential to Ossian’s installation design and understanding of the seabed environment. 

The Fugro Scout, a purpose-built geotechnical vessel, the Stril Explorer and Normand Superior, offshore survey vessels, were all deployed to carry out the complex marine geotechnical operations. 

Fugro focused on downhole geotechnical sampling and in situ cone penetration testing. 

While Ocean Infinity concentrated on the seabed scope, including shallow vibro-cores and deep push seabed cone penetration tests, some of which were carried out remotely in an industry first. 

The deployment of innovative technology and the desire to explore new solutions is a must for the successful development of the floating offshore wind sector. 

Marscha de Bruijn, project manager for Fugro said: “The successful acquisition of the downhole geotechnical data is a major milestone for the Ossian project and a significant step forward for renewable energy. 

“The geotechnical data we gathered will be invaluable for designing and installing the wind turbines, and we’re pleased to have worked closely with the Ossian team to provide the crucial insights needed to shape a sustainable energy future.” 

Fugro carried out: 

Ocean Infinity seabed scope included: 

Nils Ingvarson, chief commercial officer for Ocean Infinity said: “This project was one of many firsts including the achievement of an important technological milestone; the first remotely initiated CPT operations. 

“Over-the-horizon commands sent via a remote-control system successfully operated our newly developed device, the Infinity CPT 250 to achieve uncompromised data quality – a significant step towards remote geotechnical operations. 

“We would like to thank the Ossian group for supporting us with the testing of this new capability which will ultimately unlock more efficient offshore wind characterization. 

“This successful remote operation demonstrates that offshore operations can evolve towards a safer and greener maritime future.” 

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