Germany sets North Sea transmission goals

Germany’s federal maritime and hydrographic agency BSH today presented its North Sea offshore plan, setting out requirements for the country’s subsea transmission network for wind power.

The plan calls for the construction by 2030 of 25 converter platforms and some 3,880km of power cables for the grid connection of offshore wind farms.

“Capacities in this plan have been determined to enable meeting the Federal Government’s 2030 targets for energy policy,” says BSH President Monika Breuch-Moritz. “The grid plan results from a close coordination between the Federal Network Agency and the coastal states.”

Germany wants to reach 10GW of offshore wind capacity by 2020 and 25GW by 2030.

Industry observers believe that due to delays in the development of offshore wind parks and their grid connections, only between 6GW and 8GW will be built by 2020. At the end of 2012, Germany had only 280MW of offshore capacity connected to the grid.

The plan lays out 13 clusters for offshore wind parks with a maximum distance from Germany’s North Sea coast of 120km.

Each converter platform will have a capacity of 900MW, the BSH said. Platforms should be connected to each other so that a failure at one can be compensated for by others.

The plan includes technical guidelines to allow for a possible connection of the German grid with an international North Sea network.