Generating electricity from wind farms is more efficient at sea. Around 20 miles from the westernmost point of Denmark is Blåvands Huk, home to Horns Rev 2, a wind farm with 91 Siemens turbines, owned by Dong Energy. Opened in 2009, it was the largest in the world, until Thanet went operational in 2010. Inspecting and maintaining these assets is not easy, especially in the harsh North Sea conditions. Rope access is proving the most viable, cost effective method.
When Dong needed “shell and tail inspection and retrofits for 273 blades on 91 turbines to increase efficiency”, they approached a rope access company in 2011 to undertake the work. This involved assembling an international 23 person team, travelling between turbines by boat and living on Poseidon, the first offshore wind farm accommodation platform in the world. Every turbine was successfully inspected and fixed as needed, with minimal downtime and maximum efficiency.