Beginning in June, the Collett Team are well underway with deliveries of 242 components to construct 22 Enercon E115 E3 wind turbines at Creag Riabhach Wind Farm.
Currently under construction, Creag Riabhach Wind Farm is situated on the Altnaharra Estate, near Lairg in the North Highlands, and features 22x 67m hub height turbines with 57m blades.
Arriving at the Port of Nigg, the largest open port in the Moray Firth, Inverness, the components faced a 53-mile journey to the construction site in the North Highlands. Having already undertaken a test drive of the route utilising a 48m trailer, complete with a 9m rear projection to simulate the loaded Enercon E115 turbine blades, our Team had fully surveyed the route to ensure suitability.
Alongside highlighting any necessary route modifications and road widening requirements, our test drive also identified areas of street furniture removal, relocation of flower beds and lamp post removals to accommodate the wind turbine oversail. Having modified the route for the passage of the blades, the longest of the components, our Team could ensure safe passage of all 12 components necessary to construct each complete turbine.
With this in place, Collett began the project, transporting the 66 blades, 66 tower sections, 44 stator halves and 22 nacelles, hubs and rotor centres the 53 miles from Inverness to Lairg. Utilising a total of nine trailers across our fleet to accommodate the varying components, deliveries are now underway. With cargoes ranging from 31 to 73 Tonnes, our Team are employing the capabilities of our super wing carriers, clamp trailers, stepframes and 40ft flats to systematically deliver the components in line with the construction schedule.
Travelling in convoys of three, and utilising each of the trailer’s hydraulic capabilities to ensure a maximum traveling height of 4.95m throughout, our Team employed manual steering and contraflow manoeuvres along the route, safely delivering the first of the components to site.
On arrival at Creag Riabhach, due to site gradients, the dynamic nature of the weather and the subsequent site conditions, our Team employed the addition traction of a double-drive towing vehicle, travelling in front of the delivery convoys for the heaviest of the components.
Beginning in June, our Team have completed the delivery of components for four complete 115m rotor diameter turbines, with all 22 expected to be complete by September/October. Once fully operational, Creag Riabhach Wind Farm will generate up to 72.6MW of clean, renewable energy, enough to power 36,000 homes.