Once constructed, the proposed wind farm would be one of the largest in the world with a capacity of 1.8 GW and would generate enough clean energy to supply around 1.3 million homes. The site is located approximately 55 km off the coast of Norfolk, to the north of Vattenfall’s existing Norfolk Vanguard wind farm area.

The contract is among the latest in a series of successes for APEM, which is now surveying seven sites in the North Sea and two in the Irish Sea, as well as offshore sites in Germany and the USA.

The company’s aircraft-mounted camera systems gather exceptionally high quality data from any height to well above 2,000 feet. This allows APEM’s in-house ornithology team to identify the species of well over 95 per cent of the birds in the images and also provides precise bird flight heights that satisfy the requirements of statutory agencies.

APEM’s project manager, Sean Sweeney, said: “We’re delighted that Vattenfall has again chosen us to provide high resolution aerial surveys.

“We know how important it is for developers to have data that they can rely on and which are trusted by regulators. We ensure high quality data for our clients through our grid-based survey patterns, bespoke camera systems and software, in-house image analysts and external quality control partnerships with the British Trust for Ornithology and Sea Mammal Research Unit.

“We have also never missed a survey window, despite only flying when the weather is optimum for gathering data, thanks in part to the fact that we own our own aircraft.”

  • APEM aircraft carrying out aerial survey over a wind farm
  • Aerial view of wind turbines

APEM’s digital aerial surveys of seabirds and marine mammals have been accepted by the UK regulators, for instance through the PINs process in England, without the need for additional modelling or supplementary data gathered by boat based surveys.

APEM is a UK-owned and based company, with all its aerial digital surveys for Vattenfall’s southern North Sea projects operating from Norwich, East Anglia.

The company is proud to be celebrating 30 years of business in 2017, with projects across the UK, Europe and the US.

Kathy Wood, offshore environment manager at Vattenfall, said: “We are seeking to progress a number of proposed developments in the southern North Sea to help the UK meet its renewable energy targets.

“APEM is delivering digital aerial surveys for these projects to inform the development application process.”

If you have any queries, please contact Sean Sweeney, Ornithology technical specialist.
Alternatively you can email us here. Or call 0161 442 8938.