African Fusion

Seamless flux-cored wire from voestalpine Böhler Welding have been used in the construction of one of the most impressive offshore wind farms in the Baltic Sea.

voestalpine Bohler Welding offhore windpark

The Wikinger offshore wind farm in the Baltic Sea, undertaken by a Spanish company, is one of the most extensive investments of this decade. Seventy wind turbines have been installed close to the island of Rügen. Each wind turbine consists of a four-layer sheath and four pillars used to anchor the turbine to the seabed at depths of between 37 to 43 m. The construction also includes a connecting piece attached above the casing.

The project is due for completion in autumn 2016, and is scheduled to begin generating power in 2017.

In order to support its goal of becoming the technological leader in seamless flux-cored wires, in 2013 voestalpine acquired 90% of Fileur, an international specialist in this segment. A new competence centre was also established in Cittadella, in north-eastern Italy. The product’s major strengths include: excellent weldability and welding quality; a whole palette of unalloyed and low-alloy steels; and ease of feeding.

These seamless flux-cored wires were used in the construction of the support structures for the Wikinger offshore project, mainly because the seamless design offers optimal protection against moisture absorption, which significantly reduces the risks of hydrogen cracking.

“The reasons for using these wires are obvious: they are seamless, low hydrogen wires for the best possible protection against hydrogen and moisture absorption during warehousing or during use in workshops. The customers were extremely pleased with the high quality, good performance, and enhanced mechanical properties of these consumables,” says José María Miguel of voestalpine Böhler Welding in Barcelona, Spain.

Close networking as a success factor

voestalpine Böhler Welding Spanien S.A. worked closely with the Spanish customer during the entire project. A variety of departments at other companies within the voestalpine Böhler Welding Group were also involved. In addition, the management deployed all available resources and put all its energy into the project: local technical advisors; global application technicians; the entire production department; specialised welders; and the Spanish sales network all supported this major order.

The Spanish company also offered valuable technical advice, which was particularly appreciated by the customer. Consequently, this project represents a major success for the entire voestalpine Böhler Welding Group in the use of flux-cored wire in offshore construction.

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