Next up in our series on the Scottish supply chain is Halo Communications. We spoke to Managing Director Allan Moffat who explained the vital work his Kilmarnock based telecommunications company is carrying out for the Neart na Gaoithe (NnG) offshore wind farm.
The Scottish supply chain will play an important role in the development of NnG and over the next few weeks we are showcasing a selection of companies, like Halo Communications, and the work they do.
Halo tend to be involved with projects like NnG in the very early stages so they can look at the feasibility of work, establish potential cable routes and access to the site. Telecommunications will be critical for NnG. The connectivity provided by Halo via a series of cabling, 4G, satellites and IP addresses will mean the windfarm can be managed and operated remotely.
Halo will ensure the turbines can be monitored from the control building meaning the turbines can be switched off remotely, for example, during periods of very high winds.
Once the telecommunications are in place and NnG is operational in 2023, Halo will continue to work on the project providing round the clock technical support for maintaining and upgrading the technology as and when required.
Halo works across many sectors throughout the UK and Ireland. The team of 12 made its first foray into the renewable energy sector five years ago with consultancy work for EDF Renewables on the Fallago Rig Windfarm.
They have since worked on several other EDF projects in the UK and recently designed and connected the communications network for Dorenell wind farm in Moray, Scotland, which has been operational since last year.
Halo Communications have their own supply chain and have recently worked with Merrick Training who we highlighted in this series last week.
Allan said: “We’re now nearly a decade working in the renewable energy sector and projects like NnG have become a big part of our business.
“The telecommunications network we are building for NnG is very technical but, in a nutshell, the control building where the network will be serviced from is effectively the brain of the windfarm. The wires and cables that feed into the network that are its nerve system connecting the windfarm to the brain.
“Just like wind turbine technology is continuing to evolve at a fast pace, our industry is fast moving too and it’s imperative that we keep up with the latest technology and telecommunications on an ongoing basis.
“Some of the changes in telecoms include the current upgrades from copper to fibre and from 4G to 5G. All these changes will have to be factored in to work carried out by Halo as we continue to work on NnG once the offshore wind farm is operational.”