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Prysmian reels in major US cable deal for Vineyard Wind

Italian to lay 134km of HVAC line linking giant 800MW wind farm to Massachusetts grid

Italian cabling giant Prysmian has landed a €200m order from Vineyard Wind to supply the subsea power lines connecting the developer’s eponymous 800MW project off Massachusetts – the first utlitiy-scale array moving into construction off the US – to the onshore grid.

Prysmian, which is handling key cabling contracts at major European projects including the interrays at the giant 1.GW Hornsea 2 off Britain, will be responsible for the design, manufacture, installation and commissioning of a total of 134km of HVAC (high voltage alternating current) line made up of two 220kV three-core cables with extruded XLPE insulation.

The cables will be made at the Milan-headquartered company’s factories in Pikkala, Finland and Arco Felice, Italy, with installation handled by its Cable Enterprise and Ulisse cable-lay vessels.

Prysmian prepares for its big offshore push

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“This contract … underpins both our continued role and our commitment to the North American offshore wind sector,” said Hakan Ozmen, EVP of projects at Prysmian. “Prysmian offers extensive technical expertise, leveraging on its wide knowledge and historical experience in this industry, where we ensure our close and local support to our customers throughout the complete project life cycle.

“The US offshore wind market is now demonstrating a high level of motivation with a promising growth forecast and we are excited to contribute to realising this opportunity.”

The power lines for Vineyard Wind will feature so-called PRY-CAM permanent monitoring with long-range “distributed temperature sensing” and thermal rating systems that generate automated alarm to increase up-time and asset life, while reducing maintenance costs.

The looming proliferation of larger offshore wind farms further from shore in many global markets – starting with European demand for around 20,000km of new lines by early next decade – led Prysmian to last year sign off on a second major capital investment in five years to add a €170m ($198m) state-of-the-art cable-laying supership to its fleet , as well as to retool all its manufacturing lines for 66kV high-voltage technology, and stage a $3bn takeover of US rival General Cable.

Vineyard Wind, a 50:50 joint venture by funds of Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners and Iberdrola-owned Avangrid Renewables, said earlier this month it was engaged in financing discussions for the landmark wind farm, with 2021 a “realistic” time-frame to have the project fully operational.

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