Development of Scotland’s largest renewable energy hub well on course

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The ongoing construction of Scotland’s largest renewable energy hub is reportedly well on course approximately 10 months since the project broke ground.

According to reports, the initial phase of piling is fully complete. This phase comprised the installation of a total of 140 tubular piles with a length of up to 32 meters and a diameter of 1.2 meters. The construction of the combi wall, which is a part of phase 2 of the project, is also fully complete.

Works are currently ongoing on the installation of dolphin piles. A dolphin pile, just in case you are wondering, is a man-made berthing or mooring structure that extends above water level. It is not connected to the shore or any other structure for that matter. Only six of these piles are yet to be installed. They are all set to be in place by March 2024.

The installation of steel capping plates is also ongoing. 92 of these plates, which are fixed on top of the dolphin piles, are already complete. The plates provide a surface on which the concrete precast units will be installed. Work has already begun to position the concrete units on top of the piles. Thus far 56 units out of the required 112 have been put in place.

Other ongoing works

In early March 2024, steel reinforcement works started in preparation for the first deck pours. The latter, each of which requires approximately 500m³ of concrete, is scheduled to commence the week of March 18th. A total of eight pours are set to be carried out.

Outer Berth Leith

Other ongoing works include cathodic protection and the installation of a total of 12 fender jackets half of which have already been installed. Six skid frame assemblies, each of which comprises a total of 5 sacrificial aluminium anodes, have been installed on the completed section of rock armour and connections made to the piles.

The purpose of the anodes according to the project contractor is to prevent corrosion of the piles. The remaining assemblies are to be installed before the end of March 2024.

Overview of Scotland’s largest renewable energy hub

The US$ 56.7M development is coming up on a 175-acre site located at the Port of Leith, north of Edinburgh. It includes the construction of a bespoke, riverside marine berth capable of accommodating the world’s largest offshore wind installation vessels in a bid to support the ongoing expansion of offshore renewable energy installations in the North Sea.

The facility will feature a heavy lift capacity of up to 100 tonnes per square meter (t/m2), backed up by 35 acres of adjacent land for logistics and marshalling. A 140-acre cargo handling site will be upgraded to supplement the logistics and marshalling site by accommodating lay down, assembly, supply chain and manufacturing activities.

The project is developed by Forth Ports Limited, one of the largest, leading port operators in the UK owned by the Public Sector Pension Investment Board. GRAHAM, a privately owned company specialising in building, civil engineering, interior fit-out, facilities management and investments is the project civil engineering contractor.

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