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Year in the Life - JDR Cables


JDR Cables December instalment of their #ChamberYearintheLife

JDR Cables based on Hartlepool’s deepwater quay is a pioneering innovator which punches above its weight in the offshore, renewable energy and oil and gas sectors. It is embarking on a particularly exciting time of growth with a unique development in the cable sector which is a world-first.

The company’s global sales director with responsibility for renewables, Mike Lovell, explained that JDR cables can offer dynamic 66kV cables that can link wind turbines that are not fixed to the seabed, a tremendous feat of engineering for the business. This dynamic cable uses state of the art technology and is even more outstanding an achievement as the science behind it is far less developed than existing fixed cables.

He said: “The opportunities for our dynamic cables, which can perform in the most challenging environments at sea, have increased in more recent years as our offshore wind farm developer customers have started to commercialise floating offshore wind technology.

“All work undertaken out at sea automatically creates stress on the products being used. Now with floating wind technology, this stress is increased massively as the cables have to withstand being connected to the wind turbine while constantly moving. It is also vital the cable doesn’t damage the structure with which it is connected. Even in the most extreme weather our cable has to be effective, safe and cope with high winds, massive seas and low temperatures.

“When we were developing this product we had to answer the key question of how do you get a cable to survive in a dynamic environment, and then connect, with a huge wind turbine without affecting its performance. At JDR we were able to draw upon our extensive experience in offshore energy applications in both the Oil & Gas and Renewable energy sectors to combine technology and adapt proven components and analysis methodologies at the system level. However the thinking and development challenges were on a different scale to what we had previously delivered, especially at the 66kV high voltage level.”

The 66kV cable technology was developed by the JDR team over a number of years and supports their client, the Norwegian multinational business.

All of the cables are designed by JDR and manufactured in its Hartlepool facility, where the business has been in operation for over 10 years.

Mike Lovell said: “This cable development is way ahead of our competitors and has been possible essentially because of our customer focus. We are not the largest cable manufacturer in the world and because of this we are able to be nimble and to respond quickly to our customers’ needs, to get the right solutions to ensure their pioneering offshore energy deployments are successful.”

Floating wind power is still in its infancy compared to fixed-foundation offshore wind turbines, but has the potential to revolutionise how power is generated for deepwater platforms and on coastlines which only have access to deeper waters.

As operators look to decarbonise production and countries look for more sources of renewable energy, floating offshore wind can make the difference, and JDR Cables is committed to providing solutions and innovative technologies to help offshore wind flourish on a global scale.