Services provided by FT include:

  • Peat stability site walkover
  • Peat probing/insitu shear vane testing
  • Specification and supervision of geotechnical investigations, and testing in peat soils
  • Characterisation of the site
  • Identification of past and present land use on the site (grazing, forestry etc.) and their impact on the existing peat structure
  • Geomorphological mapping of the site
  • Identification and logging of previous peat failures
  • Slope stability calculations
  • Peat landslide susceptibility mapping
  • Modelling of potential impact from slope failure of identified areas of unstable or high risk peat
  • Peat landslide hazard and risk assessment
  • Quantitative risk assessment where significant, substantial, or serious peat slide hazards have been identified during the landslide assessment

Our Projects

galway-peatGalway Wind Park, Site Investigation

Client: SSE Renewables

Location: Galway, Ireland

Capital Value: c. €250 M

Key Facts: Galway Wind Park is a wind farm cluster in Cloosh Valley that consists of four wind farms.

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When consented and constructed, Galway Wind Park will be the largest onshore wind project in Ireland. FT was appointed by SSE Renewables to design and manage the detailed post planning site investigation works for the development Galway Wind Park will comprise a total of 69 wind turbines.  The site comprises a variable thickness of blanket peat overlying granite bedrock.  Large granite boulders are also present.  The upper layers of granite are weathered to a variable degree.  Peat depths on the site are up to 10m.

Groundwater was encountered during site investigation, particularly within the peat overburden and weathered rock.  Due to the impermeable nature of the peat and bedrock, rapid runoff and flooding during heavy rainfall was also encountered.  All aspects of the site investigations were procured and managed by FT and involved the following:

  • The excavation of approximately 400 trial pits up to 3.5 m
  • The boring and sampling of approximately 70 rotary boreholes to approximately 20m depth (open hole and rotary coring) and 10 rotary boreholes to approximately 10m depth with the construction of approximately 80 groundwater monitoring standpipes.
  • Peat probing (by hand) at approximately 1,000 locations
  • Completion of daily field reports and recording all trial pit and borehole data
  • Surveying of the borehole locations and ground elevations
  • Producing information in AGS version 3 or 4 digital data format (certified error free)
  • In-situ testing, sampling and laboratory testing as instructed by the Employer’s Representative
  • Preparing a factual report consisting of a full description of the stratigraphy encountered in the exploratory holes, the results of laboratory and in-situ testing and a location plan showing the location of the exploratory holes
  • Liaison with relevant third parties.

seeconSeecon Wind Farm, Co. Galway Environmental Impact Statement – Peat Stability Assessment

Client: Coillte Teoranta

Location: Galway, Ireland

Capital Value: €75M

Key Facts: Detailed peat stability assessment as peat and steep slopes extend over much of the site.

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Coillte Teoranta retained FT to undertake an environmental impact assessment and prepare a planning application for a proposed wind farm of 23 turbines at Seecon, Galway.  The site was 883 ha in size.  Almost the entire study area comprises coniferous forestry with the remainder of the site comprising lakes and existing access roads.

Issues of particular environmental concern that were addressed as part of the EIS included peat and steep slopes over much of the site; a detailed peat stability assessment was prepared in accordance with Scottish Executive guidelines.

FTC carried out the Peat Stability Assessment of the site, highlighting areas of the site which were deemed at higher risk of slippage.  The assessment consisted of a site walkover and peat probes/shear vane testing targeted at select locations across the site, to determine the risk associated with constructing turbines within particular areas of the site.

Based on this field information, a detailed geotechnical peat stability assessment report was prepared including:

  • Geomorphological mapping
  • Peat depth contour mapping
  • Landslide susceptibility mapping
  • Landslide hazard and risk assessment

The preparation of the report outlined areas of high risk across the site and the proximity of the proposed turbine locations to these high risk areas was identified.  The report also detailed recommendations for the relocation of turbines or access roads to reduce the risk of peat slippage within these areas.

Based on the peat stability assessment report, design and construction mitigation measures required to assist in minimising the risk associated with constructing turbines in areas of deep peat and/or high risk of slippage were outlined and included in the soils and hydrogeology section of the EIS.  Planning permission was granted in November 2011.

Europe

Eamon TimoneyEamon Timoney – Managing Director

Telephone: +353 21 4964133

Email: eamon.timoney@nullftco.ie

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