Normandie 1 cable install starts off France

French beach 8 Aug

The first 770 metres of Jersey’s 27km Normandie 1 new subsea power cable were successfully offloaded from the cable laying vessel the Stemat Spirit on to the beach at Surville, Normandy last night in a two-hour tidal window between 9.15pm and 11.20pm. The cable was pulled over the ‘mid support pontoon’ before operations were suspended until this morning’s low tide.

Eve 8 Aug

The installation is being carried out by Dutch specialists VBMS but Jersey Electricity’s Senior Projects Engineer and N1 Project Manager is onboard the 4,000-tonne Stemat with a 50-strong crew.

After last night’s initial operations Jeremy said: ‘The operation is going to plan. Both VBMS teams on board the Stemat and the beach crew are working well. We expect we will need two more tide cycles before the Stemat can move away from the Surville beach and begin its journey to Archirondel.’

By lunchtime today the beach team had successfully pulled the cable up the beach, through the dune and into the RTE joint bay where it will be jointed to the new Frenchside landline.

French beach 9 Aug

Into RTE joint bay

The new 100MW cable is being laid over same route as Jersey Electricity’s first interconnector to France, EDF1, installed in 1984 and recovered from the seabed in April in preparation for N1.

A mobile exclusion zone around the Stemat Spirit and its support vessels will remain in force throughout the installation operation. No vessels are to pass within 1,000 metres of either side or ahead of the Stemat, or within 500 metres of her stern without prior clearance from Ports of Jersey.

JW from deck 9 aug

Once complete N1 will be the third active power link between the Channel Islands and France following the installation of Normandie 2 in 2000 over an adjacent route and more recently Normandie 3, installed in 2014, over a more southerly route from Pirou Plage to Gorey.

The £40million N1 project is funded jointly with Guernsey Electricity under the oversight of the Channel Island Electricity Grid.