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Aquatic and ITB Subsea complete power cable installation in Canada

Aquatic Engineering and Construction has successfully completed a project alongside ITB Subsea (a subsidiary of the ITB Marine Group), ahead of schedule, to lay power cables for British Columbia Hydro, the main provider of electricity in British Columbia, Canada.

Quadra Island lies just off the east coast of Vancouver Island and is part of the Discovery Islands, located within the Strathcona Regional District. In January this year, British Columbia Hydro announced plans to significantly invest to increase its supply to the residents of this area, with a series of projects to deliver one of the largest expansions of electrical infrastructure in the Province’s history.*

For the Quadra Island phase of the area upgrade, Aquatic deployed its multi-reel solution and supplied a 120 te modular drive system (AQPR-07-120) with tracks (AQPRTS-02) to drive four 4.5 m diameter reels with 13,120 m of 89 mm diameter custom cable. The scope of work required a lay speed of 900 metres per hour. However, the Aquatic system, allied to ITB’s seamanship, exceeded that by almost a third and successfully laid the cable at a speed of 1150 metres per hour.

The equipment was mobilised from Aquatic’s US base at Morgan City, Louisiana. Having a full suite of equipment in North America enabled Aquatic to react swiftly to this project.

Martin Charles, managing director, Aquatic, said, “The main benefit of a multi-reel solution is the ability to manage costs and resources. Our multi-reel lay solution allows for the product to be readied onshore in controlled inspection conditions. We were able to carry all four reels on our extendable track system, allowing our teams to lay the power cable without the barge needing to shuttle up and down the Straits of Georgia, between the installation location and the transpooling site. This results in a more efficient use of the vessel and a higher lay rate and time and craneage cost savings. We would like to thank ITB Subsea for using us as a subcontractor during this project, and we look forward to future co-operations.” 

Mike Shaw, General Manager, ITB Subsea, said, “ITB Subsea provides a wide range of marine services to many different industries, and our services include underwater cable laying, commercial diving, ROV services, and marine construction.  We have been installing submarine cables on the west coast of North America for more than 50 years. For this project, Aquatic successfully provided equipment to supplement our spread of specialized cable installation equipment, and it was a great experience to have the Aquatic team onboard.”