Following the installation of the wind turbine foundations (design to be confirmed) the offshore subsea cables will be installed. The cables will either be 'export cables' or 'inter-array cables'.
The export cables take the electricity from the offshore substations to the landfall point at Carnoustie.
The inter-array cables form a network within the wind farm site and take the electricity generated by the wind turbines to the offshore substations.
In both cases, the cables are installed by specialist vessels following careful survey and route clearance (of boulders and unexploded ordnance etc). Once laid, the cables are either buried under the seabed surface or are covered by boulders to protect them from accidental snagging and breakage.
The manufacture and installation of the offshore cabling provides significant employment and business opportunity. For example, the subsea cables installed at the Beatrice Offshore wind farm were manufactured in the UK.
The offshore substations will essentially be the backbone of the wind farm, taking the electricity generated by the turbines and converting it to the voltage required for onward transmission to the onshore substation at Tealing.
The installation of the turbines will require the use of specialist heavy lifting vessels and other support vessels which is expected to include local fishing vessels who will be employed as guard vessels throughout the offshore construction phase.
In addition to the actual installation, it may be that the turbine manufacturer will choose to assemble the turbines at a marshalling yard. An example of this is the use of the Nigg Energy Park by the manufacturers of the Beatrice Offshore Wind Farm turbines.
Image : Turbine installation underway at the Beatrice Offshore Wind Farm (C) BOWL