Case

Steam Cleaning Service at a Vestas wind farm in Mutkalampi, Finland

1) Can you tell us about yourself and about the work you do at Mutkalampi wind farm?

– My name is Jimmy Nielsen and I work as site manager at a Vestas wind farm in Mutkalampi. Vestas, the company I work for, is building 69 wind turbines for NEON, our customer here in Mutkalampi. My team and I have responsibility for the entire construction project, which includes roadmaking, building infrastructure, installing power lines, assembling wind turbines and foundations. It’s the first time we’ve been involved in a project of this scale.

Jimmy Nielsen, site manager for Vestas, is running the construction project of 69 wind turbines in Mutkalampi, Finland.

2) With 69 Vestas wind turbines, this will be the largest wind farm in Finland. How far into the project are you and when will it be completed?

– It’s very windy in winter and we can’t install our turbines if temperatures drop below -20 Celsius. The turbines can function, but our guys can’t work in ice-cold conditions. And although it’s possible to install turbines when there is a lot of snow and ice, it takes more time than usual. Therefore, our preparatory phase is in the dead of winter. This is when we order parts like blades, towers, and electrical cables. Weather permitting, we’ll prepare components for installation. The first crane arrives in week twelve and is also when the installation phase starts – there shouldn’t be any snow or ice left and the wind should have died down by then. We push for completion and work our longest hours when temperatures start to rise, from April to August.

3) Vestas has wind farms all over the world, which means a team like yours must work in all weathers. What challenges typically arise when building in winter?

– It’s very windy in winter and we can’t install our turbines if temperatures drop below -20 Celsius. The turbines can function, but our guys can’t work in ice-cold conditions. And although it’s possible to install turbines when there is a lot of snow and ice, it takes more time than usual. Therefore, our preparatory phase is in the dead of winter. This is when we order parts like blades, towers, and electrical cables. Weather permitting, we’ll prepare components for installation. The first crane arrives in week twelve and is also when the installation phase starts – there shouldn’t be any snow or ice left and the wind should have died down by then. We push for completion and work our longest hours when temperatures start to rise, from April to August.

4) Are there ways to remove snow and ice from a wind turbine during the building process?

– There are many different ways to remove snow and ice, but what AMP does for us here is use steam to deice and clean the turbines’ foundations. We add 30-35 metal reinforcements to the foundations before installing the towers. The problem is that the foundations’ pits are filled with ice and snow in winter. It’s very difficult to remove ice with a hammer and chisel and therefore AMP remove it with their steam cleaner so we can add the reinforcements and install our first tower.

The wind turbine foundation was covered in snow before AMP started their work.

5) How did you find out about AMP?

– I knew they worked with Destia, the BoP contractor, when they were pouring the cement into the foundations last winter. Destia contracted AMP to remove snow and ice from the anchor cages. We looked at several options but concluded that working with AMP was the best and cheapest solution for us.

6) What challenges have you and your team faced this winter?

– We haven’t faced any particular challenges this year. We haven’t had to pause our work due to ice and snow, and that’s because of AMP’s services. We’ve removed ice and snow from the foundations with a hammer and chisel in the past, but it’s not very pleasant and very time-consuming. Now we get AMP to come in twice weekly and before we are due to install the turbines. Regular upkeep means there is no build-up of snow and that we can complete our work on schedule.

7) How would you describe their way of working?

– They are true professionals. They have worked at the Vestas site before and know what they’re doing. They are easy to communicate with and keep us informed of their progress. Whether they’ve completed their work on a foundation or are ready to drive home for the day, I always know where they’re at with their work.

AMP professionals shovel the snow away from the wind turbine’s foundation before they commence steaming.

8) Would you recommend AMP’s steam services and, if so, to who?

– I know they have worked with BoP contractors and have helped companies in the wind industry with foundation casting in the past. However, I don’t know whether our competitors use the same method we do. All I can say is that steaming is ideal for anyone in the construction industry seeking to remove snow and ice quickly and efficiently.

Steam-cleaned and plastered, the wind turbine foundation above is ready for tower assembly.

9) Is there anything else you’d like to say about your experiences with AMP?

– I am very pleased with the company and have no complaints about their work. They are friendly, communicative, and, in a nutshell, just great to work with!


Attention! During the time the mission was carried out, the company went by the name Ammattipojat. In 2022 we changed the company name to AMP Services Oy Ab and the brand name AMP.