Red7Marine is to fix a potentially "catastrophic" fault on one of two export cables at Vattenfall's 300MW Thanet offshore wind farm. The contractor has been hired to carry out repairs this autumn on what amounts to a kink in the 26.5km cable, which the developer said was installed by nowdefunct Subocean in 2010.
An application has been filed with the Marine Management Organisation to replace a section of the export link in the inter-tidal area of Pegwell Bay.
It says the wire has been laid in such as way that "the radius of the loop is currently more acute (1.35m) than the recommended angle (3.3m) for the safe operation of a cable transmitting electricity."
It adds: "There is a risk to the integrity of the cable and a catastrophic failure may be imminent."
A spokesperson said the language of the MMO application, which also raises the possibility of "meltdowns/explosion," is engineering-speak and not as dramatic as it sounds.
Divers working for Vattenfall discovered the problem, which is close to an existing joint. Red7Marine will remove the damaged section of cable and replace it with new wire and a new joint. The job will take around 20 days.
Thanet's second export cable is unaffected and will remain in operation, enabling generation to continue at the farm.
Source: reNews Europe