It is a gigantic project that mobilized hundreds of people. The 72 gravity foundations of 5000 tons of the Fécamp offshore wind farm are now complete. Located on the Port of Le Havre site, this site will be equipped with 500 megawatts of power. The start of production is scheduled for 2023. The total value of the latter is more than 2 billion euros. Enough to cover the electricity needs of 770,000 people in the Normandy region.
A titanic project
This project, commissioned by the subsidiary of EDF Renewables, the Canadians of Enbridge, and the Germans of wpd Offshore, started in December 2020, specifies by Electrek. Bouygues Travaux Publics, Saipem and Boskalis (BSB) were responsible for the foundations of this park, which is located between 13 and 22 km from the Normandy coast.
There remains a major question: what exactly are gravity foundations? They are made of precast concrete and then transported offshore by boat or flotation. They are then installed in depths that can go up to 30 meters. And it is here that the technology comes into its own since they are filled with water and sand and placed firmly on a layer of gravel. The wind turbine can then be installed on top of the foundation.
The result is clearly there since the resistance to extreme weather conditions is considerably reinforced. On this video, we can also see the impressive scale of the work carried out in Fécamp.
On site, not everyone welcomes this new park with open arms. For example, a fishing boat recently accidentally hit a gravity foundation. According to Paris Normandyhe was finally able to return to port without requesting assistance, but an investigation was opened because navigation is theoretically prohibited in the park.
More generally, our colleagues Echoes reported the concerns of local fishermen who fear in particular that they will be hampered in their fishing for scallops, the local “white gold”.
Offshore wind power is gaining momentum in France
Be that as it may, the movement of offshore wind turbines seems well and truly launched in France, after falling behind our European neighbours. The potential is gigantic and we spoke to you recently about the Saint-Nazaire park. Once the 60 wind turbines have been installed and connected to the grid, EDF officials hope to supply electricity to the equivalent of 700,000 inhabitants, or half the population of Loire-Atlantique. If you are interested in the subject, you can also read our very complete article on this subject here.