Offshore wind farm development continues with update on community events and seabed survey planned for Mooir Vannin

XOCEAN – a global leader in ocean survey technology – has been awarded a contract to gather seabed data at the site proposed for what would be the Isle of Man’s first offshore wind farm. The latest offshore survey campaign follows positive feedback for the Mooir Vannin Offshore Wind Farm planned by Ørsted during community information events held across the Island in November last year.

Starting in March, the company will conduct up to five weeks of geophysical surveys approximately 6 to 12 nautical miles off Maughold Head in the area which has been granted for lease to Ørsted by the Isle of Man Government in 2015. The company will also be investigating the possible cable routes from the offshore wind farm to the Island by surveying the seabed in and around Douglas Bay and Douglas Harbour where a future Ørsted operations base could be located.


XOCEAN will use an Uncrewed Surface Vessel (USV) to gather seabed data that’s essential to make decisions about suitable locations for wind turbines and electricity cables. The USVs are designed with sustainability in mind for the efficient, cost-effective and low carbon collection of commercial ocean data. In addition, the vessels are built to withstand the harsh marine environments in which they operate, and therefore have a long lifespan which allows them to be redeployed on multiple projects. 


Ørsted will also be issuing a report this week to highlight the key findings and feedback from the community information events held at venues across the Island last November. From next week (March 18th) postcards will be delivered to every household with a link to the report and a projected timeline for the development of the Mooir Vannin Offshore Wind Farm.


In addition to the surveys being conducted this month, the next steps in the project will be an extensive assessment and consultation process which is being planned for this year. Consultation events will be held throughout the summer in 2024 and the intention is to submit a planning application to the Isle of Man Government in 2025.


John Galloway, Development Director for Ørsted in the Isle of Man said: “We would like to thank everyone who has provided feedback so far to help us begin to shape the future of the Mooir Vannin Offshore Wind Farm. In addition to further consultation with communities and stakeholders on the Island, we will be issuing regular newsletters and updates on our website. We want to ensure that everyone is kept updated and can share insights and comments with us throughout the process.”  


He continued: We’re also delighted to be working with XOCEAN on the next phase of seabed surveys here in the Isle of Man. Their expertise in conducting offshore surveys is respected across the global wind energy industry, and Ørsted has worked successfully with them on other offshore projects. They have pioneered safe, low impact survey technology and we’re excited to find out more about the suitability of the seabed in our area for lease off the east coast of the Island as we take the next important steps, in designing and developing our plans, before submitting a planning application next year.”