XLCC designs green cable layer to meet increased HVDC cable demand

UK-based XLCC has completed the concept design of a cable-laying vessel to meet the increasing demand for high voltage direct current (HVDC) cables in offshore wind and interconnections installation.

Image by XLCC
Image by XLCC

As described, the company aims to build an advanced, first-of-a-kind cable-laying vessel that will be delivered in the first half of 2025.

“As the world strives for net-zero, the UK, EU and other world economies have set themselves ambitious targets for decarbonisation. The UK, for example, has stated that it will be powered entirely by clean energy by 2035 and that it will fully decarbonise the power system in the same time frame”, XLCC said.

“This ambition is driving an exponential growth in high voltage cable demand as the increase in installation of offshore wind and interconnectors drive a forecast six times increase (2020 – 2027 over 2014 – 2020) for HVDC cable.”

Once delivered, the vessel will support the Morocco-UK power project, through the delivery of four 3,800 kilometre subsea HVDC cables from the wind and solar generation site in Morocco to the UK.

The company is collaborating with Salt Ship Design on the development of the basic design of the vessel while operational aspects of the cable handling have been studied in collaboration with MAATS Tech and Global Marine.

Furthermore, V.Group has been appointed as the partner to support the technical development and construction of the vessel. V.Group will deliver technical services through SeaTec and the yard selection and appointment through its procurement and contracting platform MARCAS.

The tender process is now underway, with the aim to select the yard by the end of Q2 2022.

Alan Mathers, XLCC’s director said: “Our vessel will be, on delivery, the most sophisticated, capable and green cable layer in the world. With this capability, we will be able to deliver on increasing demands globally for HVDC cable deployment and fill a current and future void in the market.”

Last year, Peel Ports Clydeport signed an option agreement with XLCC for two factories in Ayrshire, Scotland, that would produce HVDC subsea cable.

Production will be focused on cables for interconnections and export cables for the offshore wind market.

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