vogt solar develops, builds and operates solar power plants all over the world.
vogt solar’s activities cover project development, engineering, procurement and construction, operation and maintenance and ownership and asset management of its solar farm portfolio.
vogt solar builds solar farms on land in the south of the UK and in quarter 1 of 2013 the company built, commissioned and accredited 4 projects with approximately 30 MWp. An example is Crinacott Solar Farm in Devon: the site is a 6.8 Megawatt plant which provides energy to 1,800 households and took just six weeks to construct.
Work began on site in February 2013 and was completed by the end of March 2013. Premier Construction caught up with Jens Kompauer, Director of International Business Development, from vogt solar to find out more about the project.
“Gaining planning permission to build farms on is always a challenge and we have a very professional team working on this with a high degree of focus on community consultation and incorporating local needs into our projects for the benefit of the community. For the Crinacott project we created a design which has minimal visual impact and fits into the Landscape. We were able to work closely with the community and the very professional council planning officers. Being very close to a primary substation and having very few houses with views over the areas obviously was beneficial for the project. This helped us tremendously at the planning stage.
“The land owner always plays a major role in the planning stage and the land owner at Crinacott Solar farm helped us a great deal throughout the process.”
Crinacott consists 28,608 solar panels; with each panel measuring one metre sixty seven by one metre. During the onsite works solar panels were placed upon a mounting system, and were screwed into place with specialist screws that ensure the panels remain in place regardless of the elements. Galvanised steel was used to construct the farms structure.
vogt solar have long term agreement with numerous manufacturers of panels. Amongst the contractors involved in the Crinacott project were Mackley Civil Engineering, Dragon Infrastructure Services, with vogt solar acting as the main contractor. Devon and Cornwall are amongst some of the sunniest spots in the UK and vogt solar have four solar farms in the area. Since energising Crinacott Solar Farm vogt solar have begun construction on another development two miles away; and built two other farms in 2012 and 2013. They are invested in and operate a number of solar farms across the UK totalling 55 MWp and are expanding further based on a development pipeline of well over 300 MWp. Of that Pipeline, 72 MWp is currently in construction for end Q1 2014, a further 84 MWp is already permitted and scheduled to be started in Q2 with the rest being in development. Jens added:
“We are committed to the development of renewable energy – it is critical for us all as a society. We are very happy with the development and commitment herein the UK and have further plans to expand: we are looking for new sites continually. We have a very responsible and professional team that has enjoyed great planning success; as an example our success rate for projects that have gone into planning application is well over 80%. Our plants are designed and built to a very high quality and have to date consistently overperformed.”
Dragon Infrastructure Ltd
Dragon Infrastructure is a specialist Independent Connections Provider (ICP) authorised by the Lloyds Register to design and install electricity distribution assets up to 132kV. Since its foundation in 2001 Dragon Infrastructure has connected over 300 major infrastructure projects throughout the UK and has established itself as one of the largest independent connectors in the UK.
With the introduction of the feed in tariff and then the Renewable Obligations Certificates Dragon has connected over 100MW of large scale renewable energy projects and has 500MW in design or construction. Dragon is the preferred connection provider for a number of the largest solar farm developers in the UK.
The team worked very closely with the developers of the Crinacott Solar Farm to ensure the adoptable infrastructure was designed and constructed to a standard that would be adopted by WPD and ensured that the connection was made in time for the site to maximize its returns under the ROCs registration scheme.
CEO Simon Phipps commented:
“Our clients have simple needs. They want an electricity connection on time and in budget. IbVogt are a very important client of ours and we have developed our relationship with them as a solution provider. They trust us to deliver.”