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Plans for Scotland's first offshore wind subsea station revealed for the Moray Firth

By Ewan Malcolm

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AKER Offshore Wind has revealed plans to utilise Scotland's first offshore wind underwater substation in the Moray Firth.

The proposed underwater substation in the Moray Firth would be the first of its kind in Scotland. Picture: Aker Offshore Wind.
The proposed underwater substation in the Moray Firth would be the first of its kind in Scotland. Picture: Aker Offshore Wind.

The announcement comes as part of the Norwegian-based company's bids for major offshore windfarms which would generate renewable electricity for millions of homes.

The project would be delivered as part of the ScotWind licensing process. Aker Offshore Wind has partnered with Ocean Winds to submit the bids which could lead to the delivery of up to 6000MW of energy in the Outer Moray Firth.

Sian Lloyd-Rees, Managing Director of Aker Offshore Wind UK, said: "This is a world-leading innovation that would be developed, manufactured and supplied in Scotland.

"Both the Aker group and Ocean Winds have the necessary heritage and experience to deliver this at scale.

"We know the benefit is there – it will revolutionise how energy is produced and present Scotland with the opportunity to export genuinely innovative technology to the rest of the world."

Dan Finch, Managing Director of Ocean Winds UK, added: "The development of subsea substations is another major step forward in terms of using world leading energy technology from our partners, Aker.

"It will enable construction of windfarms in areas of the seabed which are too deep for fixed substation foundations, therefore facilitating access to cost-effective sites worldwide, even in very deep waters.

"By including this proposal in our Scotwind bid, we can position Scotland at the front of the world’s offshore wind market, with a new, innovative technology, offering the economic opportunities associated with a new product with global demand prospects."

The subsea innovation would be developed, manufactured, and supplied in Scotland by Aker Solutions. It would provide major export opportunities for Scottish businesses.

Substations help move the energy created by wind turbines into homes and businesses. They are traditionally installed above sea level but moving them down to the seabed brings several reliability and cost benefits.

Seawater can be used as a natural cooling system, while reliability is increased through stable temperatures, fewer components and no rotating parts.

In addition, operational costs can decrease as less maintenance and material is required.

The project would be the UK's biggest wind energy development, providing homes across the nation with renewable energy.

If the project gets the go-ahead it could create countless jobs, economic opportunities and deliver major environmental benefits not only in the North East, but nationwide.

More information is available here.

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