Work has started on a three-turbine wind farm in Caerphilly, which presents geotechnical challenges.
Pen Bryn Oer is being constructed on an old coal opencast site, which means contractor Jones Bros Civil Engineering will be constructing piled foundations as part of the project.
Piling works will involve drilling up to 21 holes, each of approximately 20m in length, beneath each turbine, which will then receive steel reinforcement and concrete. This helps create a stable foundation for when the turbines are erected.
Jones Bros is also building 1,000m of new tracks, which will involve stabilising the tracks in order to minimise the lorry movements involved with importing stone to the site tracks.
The firm will also upgrade 1,000m of existing road, which will include widening corners and some off-site highway improvements in order to allow the larger turbine delivery vehicles to reach site safely.
Site agent Rhys Roberts said: “An ecologist visited the site last week and the all clear has been given to start work.
“We will begin excavating the turbine bases in mid-April and the piling work is scheduled to be carried out in May.
“The team is looking forward to getting its teeth into this wind farm and overcoming the geotechnical challenges being introduced.
“The project, between the towns of Rhymney & Tredegar, is expected to be finished by Christmas.”
The work is being carried out on behalf of client REG Power Management.
With an installed capacity of 6MW, the wind farm is expected to generate around 18 GWh per year, enough to power approximately 4,400 homes per year.
Founded in the 1950s and employing almost 350 people, Jones Bros has grown rapidly in the last decade. It is currently working on contracts in various sectors including the construction of waste management facilities, highways, flood and marine defence and renewable energy projects around the UK.