The developers of a floating wind scheme off the northeast coast of Scotland have begun gathering wave, wind and weather data at the site.
Floating LiDAR and wave buoys have been deployed at the location of the proposed 100-MW Salamander floating wind scheme, kicking off a 12-month metocean campaign.
The project – to be built around 20 miles off Peterhead – secured a lease award in March as part of the Innovation and Targeted Oil and Gas (INTOG) round, aimed at supporting the decarbonisation of oil and gas platforms.
It’s backed by a joint venture of Ørsted, Simply Blue Group and Subsea7, after the Danish developer took an 80% majority share in the project last April.
The survey, conducted by Fugro, will run for 12 months and help offer insights to inform the project’s design, operations and maintenance strategy, as well as support the planning application process.
Two floating Seawatch wind lidar buoys and a Wavescan buoy have been deployed to gather essential meteorological, oceanographic, and environmental site data. These include wave height, wind and current speed and other region-specific metrics, enabling a comprehensive assessment of the site’s characteristics and seasonal conditions.
The campaign forms part of a series of surveys that must be conducted by the project team before they can prepare an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and Habitat Regulations Appraisal (HRA).
The Salamander team says it aims to submit its consenting applications by early 2024.
Project development director Hugh Yendole said: “This is a key step in the development of our pioneering project. As a stepping-stone development, Salamander will use innovative floating offshore wind technologies to help Scotland and the UK progress towards a net-zero future. This survey is crucial in determining the most appropriate course of action moving forward.
“We are pleased to have Fugro on board for the delivery of the survey, to aid our understanding of the environmental factors that will influence the selection of any design or operational features of the farm.”
The developers also intend to hold further public consultations on the scheme this month, following local feedback received since initial events in June.
The in-person events will take place from 10 am to 7 pm on Tuesday 21 November at Balmoor Stadium in Peterhead, and from 10 am to 4 pm on Wednesday 22 November at Crimond Medical and Community Hub.
A virtual presentation is available via the Salamander website between Monday 20 November and Sunday 3 December.
The developers have previously said they intend for the scheme be up and running as early as 2028, and in doing so provide insights and help establish best practices for future commercial scale developments in Scottish waters, ahead of the larger-scale ScotWind buildout.