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Johnsond

UK Windfarms “Lost opportunities “

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@Johnsond

Be plainer and more structured please. Start at the beginning. What's this all about?

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4 hours ago, AHPP said:

@Johnsond

Be plainer and more structured please. Start at the beginning. What's this all about?

Sorry bud but I’m quite busy at work the moment on 6-6 nights and don’t have time to get into a long drawn out explanation. A few others here have picked up on what I’m on about, bit of google action and some research will give far more insight than I ever could. 

Edited by Johnsond
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3 hours ago, Mark J said:

Those 'Yellow Jackets' were parked up near Jarrow for a while. I was amazed that they were shipped here for assembling rather than being fabricated here, a double piss take given the heritage of shipbuilding in the NE.

 

 

These are different jackets Mark but pretty much more of the same in regards made overseas and shipped here all in the name of maximum profit. 

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SNP historic and total fiscal incompetence is the reason Scotland is going down the pan. Too many halfwits here are under the illusion that independence and Nicola Sturgeon are the panacea and a safe pair of hands to run a country.

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WWW.THEGUARDIAN.COM

More than 1,000 jobs created or safeguarded as SeAH and Smulders projects are backed by state funding


Do you think that they'll continue to import things for the construction of the proposed wind farms on the East coast?


 

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I wasn't sure whether to dip a toe in this thread or not, but obviously I have decided I will.

 

It's a nice idea to say that wind turbines should be built in the UK, but if you take that statement apart rationally, it's not obvious where you would draw the lines.

 

Breaking down the turbines into their major units - foundations (jackets, legs etc), towers, blades and hub/gearbox you have different materials and processing requirements. Start with the simple ones - foundations and towers. How far down the supply chain do you want to go? We don't really have any high grade iron ore remaining, so that means either refining scrap or importing ore. We would then need to build a plant to do that, and in the current circumstances that would have an enormous level of emissions controls. Once you could make the steel, you would need a mill capable of rolling the right sections. Fabrication is going to be largely automated, as is the inspection, so a lot of capital investment but not that many jobs. Once you have built all of these facilities, given that it is running in a high labour cost environment and there is other, cheaper, global supply, it is only going to serve the domestic market, so the utilisation is going to be pretty poor. That means with high capital investment, high running costs and poor utilisation it will add astronomically to the cost of the steel components.

 

Blades can be (and already are) made cost-effectively in the UK (see Vestas on the IoW).

 

The hub and gearbox are large machined parts. If somebody wants to develop a new one from scratch which lies outside the intellectual property protection of the people who have invested in this so far, great, but it will probably take a decade of development before it can be launched. The alternative would be to use an old design where the IP has expired and accept the reduced reliability and efficiency. The capability to make these is still just about there in the UK with suitable capital investment, but I note that Sheffield Forgemasters has just had to be bought out by the government to save it from collapse, so clearly it isn't a very economically attractive proposition.

 

So, once we have had the huge government investment programme, the timeframe to procure, install, commission and optimise, the UK should be able to produce massively expensive wind turbine parts for domestic use. The additional cost will of course have to be passed on to the consumer. It's hard to predict exactly how much it would add but something around 50% is probably about right to recover the investment in a reasonable timeframe. Increasing electricity costs by 50% in parallel with the net-zero decarbonising agenda may not be ideal? It would probably snarl up the economy quite well if people could no longer afford to travel to work in their electric cars, the price of delivery went up so all goods became more expensive etc. Of course, that could be overcome by increasing wages, but then you have an inflationary spiral.

 

Fundamentally, what the UK is good at is selling services. It is also good at inventing things. Developing new innovative technology and selling it internationally as a service is the government plan around net-zero, and it at least has a ring of credibility about it. I could go on at great length about mis-placed investment and social engineering experiments are hugely reducing the effectiveness of that plan, but I won't.

 

Alec

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36 minutes ago, agg221 said:

I wasn't sure whether to dip a toe in this thread or not, but obviously I have decided I will.

 

It's a nice idea to say that wind turbines should be built in the UK, but if you take that statement apart rationally, it's not obvious where you would draw the lines.

 

Breaking down the turbines into their major units - foundations (jackets, legs etc), towers, blades and hub/gearbox you have different materials and processing requirements. Start with the simple ones - foundations and towers. How far down the supply chain do you want to go? We don't really have any high grade iron ore remaining, so that means either refining scrap or importing ore. We would then need to build a plant to do that, and in the current circumstances that would have an enormous level of emissions controls. Once you could make the steel, you would need a mill capable of rolling the right sections. Fabrication is going to be largely automated, as is the inspection, so a lot of capital investment but not that many jobs. Once you have built all of these facilities, given that it is running in a high labour cost environment and there is other, cheaper, global supply, it is only going to serve the domestic market, so the utilisation is going to be pretty poor. That means with high capital investment, high running costs and poor utilisation it will add astronomically to the cost of the steel components.

 

Blades can be (and already are) made cost-effectively in the UK (see Vestas on the IoW).

 

The hub and gearbox are large machined parts. If somebody wants to develop a new one from scratch which lies outside the intellectual property protection of the people who have invested in this so far, great, but it will probably take a decade of development before it can be launched. The alternative would be to use an old design where the IP has expired and accept the reduced reliability and efficiency. The capability to make these is still just about there in the UK with suitable capital investment, but I note that Sheffield Forgemasters has just had to be bought out by the government to save it from collapse, so clearly it isn't a very economically attractive proposition.

 

So, once we have had the huge government investment programme, the timeframe to procure, install, commission and optimise, the UK should be able to produce massively expensive wind turbine parts for domestic use. The additional cost will of course have to be passed on to the consumer. It's hard to predict exactly how much it would add but something around 50% is probably about right to recover the investment in a reasonable timeframe. Increasing electricity costs by 50% in parallel with the net-zero decarbonising agenda may not be ideal? It would probably snarl up the economy quite well if people could no longer afford to travel to work in their electric cars, the price of delivery went up so all goods became more expensive etc. Of course, that could be overcome by increasing wages, but then you have an inflationary spiral.

 

Fundamentally, what the UK is good at is selling services. It is also good at inventing things. Developing new innovative technology and selling it internationally as a service is the government plan around net-zero, and it at least has a ring of credibility about it. I could go on at great length about mis-placed investment and social engineering experiments are hugely reducing the effectiveness of that plan, but I won't.

 

Alec

All of what you have said is probably true and also very sad .  Many years ago I worked in a toolroom ( time served toolmaker and dev engineer ) . There were top notch tool making outfits all around the south . There came a time when the grownups decided it would be cheaper to get the tools made abroad . It was but when they came back we were Kept in work putting them right . Just seemed a waste of time and money to me then .

Edited by Stubby

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4 hours ago, agg221 said:

I wasn't sure whether to dip a toe in this thread or not, but obviously I have decided I will.

 

It's a nice idea to say that wind turbines should be built in the UK, but if you take that statement apart rationally, it's not obvious where you would draw the lines.

 

Breaking down the turbines into their major units - foundations (jackets, legs etc), towers, blades and hub/gearbox you have different materials and processing requirements. Start with the simple ones - foundations and towers. How far down the supply chain do you want to go? We don't really have any high grade iron ore remaining, so that means either refining scrap or importing ore. We would then need to build a plant to do that, and in the current circumstances that would have an enormous level of emissions controls. Once you could make the steel, you would need a mill capable of rolling the right sections. Fabrication is going to be largely automated, as is the inspection, so a lot of capital investment but not that many jobs. Once you have built all of these facilities, given that it is running in a high labour cost environment and there is other, cheaper, global supply, it is only going to serve the domestic market, so the utilisation is going to be pretty poor. That means with high capital investment, high running costs and poor utilisation it will add astronomically to the cost of the steel components.

 

Blades can be (and already are) made cost-effectively in the UK (see Vestas on the IoW).

 

The hub and gearbox are large machined parts. If somebody wants to develop a new one from scratch which lies outside the intellectual property protection of the people who have invested in this so far, great, but it will probably take a decade of development before it can be launched. The alternative would be to use an old design where the IP has expired and accept the reduced reliability and efficiency. The capability to make these is still just about there in the UK with suitable capital investment, but I note that Sheffield Forgemasters has just had to be bought out by the government to save it from collapse, so clearly it isn't a very economically attractive proposition.

 

So, once we have had the huge government investment programme, the timeframe to procure, install, commission and optimise, the UK should be able to produce massively expensive wind turbine parts for domestic use. The additional cost will of course have to be passed on to the consumer. It's hard to predict exactly how much it would add but something around 50% is probably about right to recover the investment in a reasonable timeframe. Increasing electricity costs by 50% in parallel with the net-zero decarbonising agenda may not be ideal? It would probably snarl up the economy quite well if people could no longer afford to travel to work in their electric cars, the price of delivery went up so all goods became more expensive etc. Of course, that could be overcome by increasing wages, but then you have an inflationary spiral.

 

Fundamentally, what the UK is good at is selling services. It is also good at inventing things. Developing new innovative technology and selling it internationally as a service is the government plan around net-zero, and it at least has a ring of credibility about it. I could go on at great length about mis-placed investment and social engineering experiments are hugely reducing the effectiveness of that plan, but I won't.

 

Alec

So we just content ourselves with the current situation 🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️ How sad would that be if there is zero appetite for change.. Everything you say has an element of truth but if we don’t change where does that leave us eventually??. 100% reliant/vulnerable to overseas governments and companies. Licence built products are nothing new and me personally I feel not having a domestic steel industry is insanity. Too much to go into right now but as I say often the job opportunities being missed are massive. I’m just to about to go on shift here out on a Job in the UK sector North Sea we are on a Norwegian ship built in Poland fitted out in Norway the officers are all Norwegian the remainder of the crew are Philippines nationals doing 6-9 month trips. Not one member of the boat crew is a UK National, that’s a pattern you will see throughout the oil and gas and Renewables sector. Project crew is comprised of thankfully UK guys. The client/company is yet another foreign outfit that have bought an ageing UK NSea asset to suck the last few quid out of it for minimum outlay. 

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6 hours ago, Mark J said:

More than 1,000 jobs created or safeguarded as SeAH and Smulders projects are backed by state funding


Do you think that they'll continue to import things for the construction of the proposed wind farms on the East coast?


 

They already have and are Mark

Blades for some are made in Hull now, foreign firm but it still brings jobs. 

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5 hours ago, agg221 said:

I wasn't sure whether to dip a toe in this thread or not, but obviously I have decided I will.

 

It's a nice idea to say that wind turbines should be built in the UK, but if you take that statement apart rationally, it's not obvious where you would draw the lines.

 

Breaking down the turbines into their major units - foundations (jackets, legs etc), towers, blades and hub/gearbox you have different materials and processing requirements. Start with the simple ones - foundations and towers. How far down the supply chain do you want to go? We don't really have any high grade iron ore remaining, so that means either refining scrap or importing ore. We would then need to build a plant to do that, and in the current circumstances that would have an enormous level of emissions controls. Once you could make the steel, you would need a mill capable of rolling the right sections. Fabrication is going to be largely automated, as is the inspection, so a lot of capital investment but not that many jobs. Once you have built all of these facilities, given that it is running in a high labour cost environment and there is other, cheaper, global supply, it is only going to serve the domestic market, so the utilisation is going to be pretty poor. That means with high capital investment, high running costs and poor utilisation it will add astronomically to the cost of the steel components.

 

Blades can be (and already are) made cost-effectively in the UK (see Vestas on the IoW).

 

The hub and gearbox are large machined parts. If somebody wants to develop a new one from scratch which lies outside the intellectual property protection of the people who have invested in this so far, great, but it will probably take a decade of development before it can be launched. The alternative would be to use an old design where the IP has expired and accept the reduced reliability and efficiency. The capability to make these is still just about there in the UK with suitable capital investment, but I note that Sheffield Forgemasters has just had to be bought out by the government to save it from collapse, so clearly it isn't a very economically attractive proposition.

 

So, once we have had the huge government investment programme, the timeframe to procure, install, commission and optimise, the UK should be able to produce massively expensive wind turbine parts for domestic use. The additional cost will of course have to be passed on to the consumer. It's hard to predict exactly how much it would add but something around 50% is probably about right to recover the investment in a reasonable timeframe. Increasing electricity costs by 50% in parallel with the net-zero decarbonising agenda may not be ideal? It would probably snarl up the economy quite well if people could no longer afford to travel to work in their electric cars, the price of delivery went up so all goods became more expensive etc. Of course, that could be overcome by increasing wages, but then you have an inflationary spiral.

 

Fundamentally, what the UK is good at is selling services. It is also good at inventing things. Developing new innovative technology and selling it internationally as a service is the government plan around net-zero, and it at least has a ring of credibility about it. I could go on at great length about mis-placed investment and social engineering experiments are hugely reducing the effectiveness of that plan, but I won't.

 

Alec

Yet Germany and to a lesser extent Italy, still manage to have competitive manufacturing industries including toolmaking and machining. Due to the tighter environmental controls here surely emissions overall would be lower compared to places like China? 

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