August 5 - MHI Vestas Offshore Wind contracted Hamburg based design and engineering company HeavyLift@Sea to design grillages for the sea fastening of wind turbine blades built for Dong Energy's 258 MW Burbo Bank Extension project.

The 80 m long blades form part of the 32 MHI Vestas turbines that will make up the offshore wind farm. The first six blades have arrived at MHI Vestas' pre-assembly facility in Belfast Harbour from the company's factory on the Isle of Wight, UK.

While some are manufactured on the Isle of Wight, a number of the blades are being manufactured at MHI Vestas' facility in Nakskov, Denmark. These will also be shipped to Belfast on completion, using multipurpose vessels.

HeavyLift@Sea noted that wind turbine components are not designed for transportation and ship motions can cause stress to the units, meaning that sea fastening is likely to suffer from fatigue.

The company designed grillages that could be easily installed and dismounted in order to maintain the vessel's flexibility for alternative project transportation. HeavyLift@Sea designed two frames and two grillages, with a total weight of around 12 tonnes.

The Burbo Bank Extension project - an addition to the 90 MW Burbo Bank wind farm off the coast of Liverpool - is being developed by a consortium of Dong Energy, PKA and Kirkbi.


The first components arrive at Belfast Harbour.