Carbon Trust Invites Bids for OW Subsea Cables R&D

The Carbon Trust has invited tenders for Dynamic Thermal Rating of Subsea Cables (DTR), as part of its major technology accelerator initiative focussed on reducing the cost of energy (GBP / MWh) from offshore wind by more than 10 %.

The Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) is funding large-scale research, development and demonstration (RD&D) projects to unlock technological barriers to advance the industry, and thereby accelerate its development so that significant carbon emissions reductions are achieved.

Projects have been selected based on their potential impact on the cost of offshore wind farms and on their ability to deliver operational improvements in the short to medium term. This initiative has been structured as a funding collaboration between the Carbon Trust and a number of international energy companies active in offshore wind farm development.

The thermal optimisation of subsea cables is critical to achieve the formulated cost reduction targets for offshore wind. The current practice in the calculation of the current rating of subsea cables for offshore wind farms appears rather conservative.

The recent Cigré publication TB 610 ‘Offshore Generation Cable Connections’ presented the methodology on how to determine the dynamic loading of the cable from the wind profile. For this reason, the focus of this project is to look into the thermal optimisation of subsea cables in the operating conditions of offshore wind farms.

The primary objectives of the project are to: 1. Identify all the critical cable de-rating factors; 2. Identify all the risks and propose mitigation measures; 3. Develop a fit-for-purpose methodology for the determination of the current rating of inter- array and export cables of offshore wind farms; 4. Recommend appropriate software tools to model inter-array and export cables of offshore wind farms.

For the project, an Advisory Panel consisting of industry and scientific experts and representatives of certification bodies will be implemented.

Deadline for submission of tenders is 4 January, 2016.

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