Moving 75 tonne nacelle units from a ship to a specialist vehicle took some delicate touches from PD Ports’ experienced stevedoring team at the Port of Immingham.
"The handling operation required extreme care as the nacelles were manufactured from lightweight materials and the team needed to use guide-wires for the inch-perfect precision movement onto the vehicles," says Jerry Hopkinson, PD Ports’ managing director, bulks, ports and logistics.
The five units were destined for a site near Mansfield which will form part of a new five turbine wind farm expected to generate 9MW of power, equivalent to the domestic electricity needs of about 5,000 average UK households.
A nacelle is the structure at the top of the wind turbine tower that houses the key components of the wind turbine, including the rotor shaft, gearbox, and generator, and is located just behind (or, in some cases, in front of) the wind turbine blades.
These nacelles arrived in Immingham in the open hold of the ship Golo River which had loaded the cargo in Northern Spain. The operation was a complete success for the Danish customers who are already discussing other similar projects with the port.
PD Ports, which operates the terminal at Immingham and also owns Teesport and Hartlepool, is rapidly building an expertise in handling cargo for both onshore and offshore wind farms.
It is promoting the concept of an energy hub in the north-east and has recently worked with other local companies to launch Chain Reaction: Teesside’s Renewable Energy Supply Chain Cluster. The group says that Teesside has the land, the skilled engineers and the motivation to create a national – or even international – centre of excellence in the renewable energy sector.