Laying of Malta-Siciliy Interconnector Starts

Enemalta reached another major milestone with Sicily.

On December 28 a cable laying ship which has 50km (5,000 tonnes of cable) of the interconnector cable could be seen from the Coast Road in Bahar ic-Caghaq.

This ship, the Nexans Skagerrak, is a specially made ship which is designed for the laying of underwater cables. This operation sees the submarine cable from the Nexans Skagerrak being pulled towards the Maghtab terminal station. The cable is first passed through a 220m underwater micro tunnel starting from the middle of Qalet Marku bay, and then passed underneath the Coast Road, ending in an 850m culvert which then leads to the Maghtab terminal station.

As soon as the cable is pulled all the way to the Terminal Station and secured, the Nexans Skagerrak will start laying the cable towards Sicily. The underwater cable will be protected from the entrance to the micro tunnel up to 2km offshore with cast iron shells. This is done for ecologically sensitive reasons to to minimise damage to the posedonia meadows. These cast iron shells will also serve as extra protection in the case of ships’ anchors and trawlers.

After the first 2km of cable are laid the ship will then continue its journey towards Sicily while laying the cable, and then the ship will go over the cable once again to carry out the jetting of the cable which will bury it in the seabed.

When the whole operation will be complete it will then go back to Norway to load on the next 50km of the cable to continue the operation towards Sicily. The ship will then continue were it had left off, joining the second half of the cable and making its way towards Sicily. This operation will start in the beginning of the coming weeks and will be completed at the Marina in Ragusa.

Press Release, December 30, 2013


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