About the Project

The project is currently in a developmental phase during which the design is being tailored specifically to the site. During this phase we are also seeking the appropriate consents to allow us to install and operate a floating wind project at this location.  This page aims to provide a high level introduction about the project, but please don’t hesitate in contacting us if you would like to know more – contact details are available on the Contact Us page.

An approximate timeline is located at the bottom of this page to highlight key milestones as currently envisaged.

The Site

The TwinHub project will be deployed within the existing Wave Hub site, approximately 16km off the coast of Hayle in Cornwall. It will connect to the existing cable tails which run in to the Hayle substation, making full use of what has already been installed.

The Site, cable route, and associated onshore infrastructure, were originally granted consent in 2007 to support the use of wave energy converters for renewable energy and are in situ and ready for use.

The offshore site will host two floating offshore wind platforms, each with two turbines. Water depth are about 50 – 60 m so the platform will be anchored to the seabed with a single point mooring using what is known as the catenary system. The image to the left illustrates how it might look under the surface once the floaters are installed. The total installed capacity will be on the range of 30 – 40 MW, which is enough to power approximately 45,000 homes. 

The site has been the subject of a number of Environmental impact Assessments, and subsequent Environmental Statements, to support the relevant consents. The most recent Environment Statement  was undertaken in 2018 to make provision for floating wind at the site, and can be viewed via the Marine Management Organisation’s Public Register.

Technology

twinhub
The project will utilise  Hexicon’s trademark design TwinWind. The TwinWind design differs to other floating wind designs in that it hosts two wind turbines on each platform.

The TwinWind design allows the foundations, rather than the individual turbine nacelles, to align with the wind around a single mooring point, known as weathervaning. 

The innovative design has significant benefits as it increases the energy density for a giving area, relative to a single turbine platform, reducing the environmental impact. More compact wind farm design also provides additional benefits such as minimizing the mooring and cabling infrastructure reducing the seabed footprint. 

Floating foundations in general allow offshore wind turbines to be positioned further away from shore in deeper waters when compared to conventional fixed bottom designs, reducing visual impact and improving wind conditions. Read more

The proposed development is an essential steppingstone project that will demonstrate technological and commercial viability with the aim of it being used further offshore in deeper waters.

Construction

The principal methods of construction for floating offshore wind are well developed, but they are design specific as well as related to the location and characteristics of the assembly yard and fabrication facilities.

These latter factors are subject to the standard construction execution procurement process and, once finalized, will allow the full and final construction methodology to be presented and agreed upon with all interested parties and stakeholders. As a result, the detailed construction methodology is being developed in parallel with the design.

It is envisaged that the two completed platforms will be built, wet-towed and installed on site sequentially, with one of the primary drivers to this sequence being the availability of onshore assembly space.

The proposed methodology has the added advantage of undertaking the majority of the work on land, or in sheltered nearshore environments, thus minimising the risks associated with offshore construction and inclement weather. This also ensures reducing offshore environmental disturbances 

Project Timeline

2007
Wave Hub

Wave Hub was first established and consented as a testing facility for wave energy devices, located off the north coast of Cornwall. 

2020
Section 36

In November 2020, a Section 36 of the Energy Act 1989 (as amended) was granted for the generation of electricity from floating offshore wind at the Wave Hub site. As part of the application process, a public consultation was held.

2021
Lease transfer & further consents sought

In July 2020, the lease for the Wave Hub testing facility was transferred to TwinHub Limited.

A marine licence application was granted in January 2022 for the installation of the anchors, moorings and floaters.

2022 - 2023
FEED & Detailed Design

In summer 2022 the project enters the next phase of the design, (known as Front End Engineering Design), procurement and construction planning. Further stakeholder engagement will be ongoing, as will engagement with potential supply chain. 3D physical modelling in wind and wave tanks, and offshore geotechnical and geophysical surveys will also be done. 

Manufacturing will start towards the end of this period. 

2024 - 2025
Construction & Commissioning

The installation of the anchors and mooring lines, followed by the towing to site of the two floaters is expected in 2024, with final commissioning and hook up to the grid expected in 2025. 

2025 and beyond
Operational

The project will be operational and generating electricity that can be exported to the grid from 2025. Minimal maintenance is expected on a yearly basis during its design life. 

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