Iberdrola subsidiary ScottishPower Renewables has awarded two contracts worth €18m to UK based firm Gardline Group and Denmark-based GEO to conduct a full geological survey of the Baltic Sea area where the proposed 400MW Wikinger wind farm will be located off the coast of Rügen Island.
The survey will determine the type of foundations required for the €1.6bn project, which will employ 80, turbines measuring 150m.
Iberdrola Global Offshore Division ScottishPower Renewables CEO Keith Anderson said the commencement of sub-surface drilling is a crucial stage of the project.
"The outcome of geotechnical testing will provide us with valuable data on the morphology of the seabed, which will directly affect the construction and design of the columns supporting the giant wind turbines," said Anderson.
The firms will take stratigraphic samples of sedimentary and metamorphic rocks in 34km²area aided by specially designed vessels which will drill 63m boreholes.
In addition, the companies will conduct seismic surveys using sound waves to determine the structure of the terrain.
On completion, the Wikinger offshore wind project will generate enough power to meet the electricity needs of 350,000 German households on an annual basis.