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Details for ETI-MARINE-3
Reference Number ETI-MARINE-3
Title Wet-mate Connector
Status Completed
Energy Categories RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES(Wind Energy) 30%;
RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES(Ocean Energy) 30%;
OTHER POWER and STORAGE TECHNOLOGIES(Electricity transmission and distribution) 40%;
Research Types Applied Research and Development 100%
Science and Technology Fields ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Electrical and Electronic Engineering) 100%
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Project Contact
No email address given
MacArtney UK Ltd.
Award Type Standard
Funding Source ETI
Start Date 01 November 2009
End Date 28 February 2012
Duration 28 months
Total Grant Value £1,100,000
Industrial Sectors Manufacturing
Region Scotland
Programme Marine
Investigators Principal Investigator Project Contact , MacArtney UK Ltd. (100.000%)
Web Site http://www.macartney.com/renewable-energy
Objectives This project is designing and assembling a high voltage generic wet-mate connector and stab-plate mechanism, which will be tested and demonstrated under both workshop and real-sea conditions. Wet-mate connectors link offshore energy sources to the cables transmitting the electricity to shore. The availability of wet-mate connectors with a significantly higher rating of 11kV instead of the currently available 6.6kV would reduce the number of cables required. This project will directly address a major challenge that is constraining the development of the marine energy sector. Although there is a clear industry need, funding from individual wave and tidal developers is not currently available at the required levels and existing deep-water connectors are too expensive for these applications.
Abstract Press Release dated 08 Mar 2012

MacArtney has developed an entirely new type of medium voltage wet mate connector designed especially for the offshore renewable energy market. The new 11 kV wet mate connector makes interconnection and connecting dynamic cables from offshore renewable energy converters to export cables faster and easier. Up to now, disconnecting or connecting cable terminations offshore has been a time-consuming and consequently expensive business and required bringing cables up on deck. Funded by ETI, MacArtney has developed, produced and tested the new 11 kV connector solution.

MacArtney’s wet mate connector eliminates the need to bring the cable to the surface for mating and de-mating, shortens the time needed for connection and makes it possible to operate in waters with limited time windows. This is particularly important for renewable energy devices where changing tides or wave action are often a critical factor in marine renewable deployments.

Faster and easier terminations : Cables ends are terminated to an 11 kV connector pair before deployment and mechanically connected offshore. The mechanical connection of the two halves takes less than an hour – a significant improvement on the time it normally takes to cut and splice cables offshore. This mechanical connection also makes it possible to connect and disconnect cables time and time again. The 11 kV termination can also be pre mounted onto cable ends for installation in two stages. Half of the system can be installed on the sea floor with a pressure cap mounted to the connector and the second half of the cable mated at a later stage. "We know what challenges renewable energy converters face Being involved with many large marine renewable energy projects over recent years has given MacArtney a deep understanding of the challenges and issues faced when connecting moving, dynamic devices to stationary export cables that transfer captured energy to the onshore grid."

Grid compliant - The MacArtney 11 kV wet mate connector system is a fully tested and EN/CEI/IEC 60502-4 compliant connector solution specifically designed to meet the needs of the marine renewables industry and requirements from grid owners and utilities. Tests were witnessed by DnV (Det Norske Veritas) and real-sea tests performed off Falmouth, UK, in October 2011.

The introduction of the wet mate 11 kV connector is an important part of the overall effort to bring down the cost of harnessing marine renewable energy to compete with other energy sources.
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 29/03/12
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