A Goose Creek manufacturer of high-voltage cables for the energy industry has signed a contract to design, manufacture and install cables for the first phase of the large wind power farm that will rise from the sea off of Scotland.
French-owned Nexans inked the deal for the Seagreen 1 project with SSE Renewables.
Construction of the 1,075-megawatt project, roughly 17 miles off the coast of Angus, will start next year.
The Nexans plant at Charleston International Manufacturing Center will build three 40-mile-long underwater cables that will transport electricity generated by Seagreen’s turbines to land. A second Nexans plant in Belgium will build land cables connecting to a new substation, where Seagreen power will feed into the United Kingdom’s national electricity transmission system.
The wind farm will be Scotland’s largest source of renewable energy, able to power 1 million homes.
Nexans, based in Calais, France, is also building a cable-laying vessel called Aurora to transfer underwater cables from its Berkeley County site along the Cooper River. That vessel is expected to be completed in the second quarter of next year.
Production of the underwater cables involves lowering a copper conductor into a 426-foot-tall tower, where it is encased in melted plastic and then cured and cooled with nitrogen. The landmark structure at the Goose Creek site is among the tallest in South Carolina.
Nexans, which opened the 350,000-square-foot plant in 2014, underwent an $80 million expansion in 2018 to convert from above-ground to underwater cable production. It’s the only Nexans site in North America that makes those cables.
The expansion also includes a shipping terminal where the company’s cable-laying vessels can load up before heading to offshore projects.
Reach David Wren at 843-937-5550 or on Twitter at @David_Wren_