Amprion or 50Hertz ask about converter platforms

Amprion or 50Hertz ask about converter platforms

MWith regard to the energy transition, the news from Siemens Energy seems to be good news: the energy technology group has received an order worth billions for the construction of converter platforms. With the help of these stations, offshore wind power is converted from alternating current to direct current at sea so that it can be transported to land without major losses.

Specifically, it is about converters for two grid connection systems, each with two gigawatts of output, which are being built for the grid operator Amprion and are to be used to transmit electricity to Wehrendorf in Lower Saxony and Westerkappeln in North Rhine-Westphalia from the end of the decade. Together with the maintenance contract for ten years, the project has a volume of more than 4 billion euros.

According to Siemens Energy, it is the largest offshore grid connection order the company has ever received. Siemens has won the Dragados shipyard in Cadiz, Spain, as a production partner for this new generation of platforms. With 900 megawatts, the previous projects had not even made half the output possible.

The problem: there is currently no shipyard in Germany that would be able to carry out the order. “Having only a single location across Europe for the manufacture of 2 gigawatt converter platforms does not bode well for the energy transition, which depends in large part on the expansion of offshore wind energy,” warns the Offshore Wind Energy Foundation, a non-partisan, supra-regional and independent institution that sees itself as a communication platform for actors from politics, business and research. The Wind Energy at Sea Act, which came into force on January 1, stipulates that the installed capacity will increase to at least 30 gigawatts by 2030. The need for equipment is correspondingly large. The network operator Tennet alone has tendered a dozen such platforms, and Amprion has also announced further tenders.

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