The Burbo Bank Extension offshore wind farm, positioned seven kilometres outside Liverpool Bay and a joint partnership between DONG, PKA and KIRKBI, has generated electricity for the very first time. This is also the first time that new MHI Vestas 8MW turbines have been used for commercial purposes offshore.
It’s hoped that when all 32 turbines are in position, which is expected to take place in the first three months of next year, the wind farm will be able to meet the yearly electricity demands of around 230,000 homes in the UK, generating up to 258MW of electricity, New Civil Engineer reports.
The first Burbo Bank offshore wind farm began operating back in 2007, the first to use 3.6MW wind turbines, which have now become the product of choice for those in the industry.
Claus Bøjle Møller, Burbo Bank programme director, was quoted by the news source as saying: “First power is a key milestone for us because it proves that every part of the transmission and generation equipment is successfully working. This milestone is also significant for the offshore wind industry at a broader scale. Using these bigger turbines is a major step in reducing the cost of energy from offshore wind and we are proud to once again introduce a step-change in technology.”
The first of the 32 wind turbines was installed at the wind farm back in September of this year. The turbines used are 195m tall, so bigger than the Gherkin in London and the largest in the world. The 80m blades used for the turbines will also be the first ones to be built locally and installed at an offshore wind farm in the UK, having been designed and manufactured on the Isle of Wight.
Mr Møller explained that by using bigger turbines on certain sites, the cost of providing renewable energy to UK homes is able to be reduced.
Of course, this isn’t the only project of its kind currently underway in the UK. Work recently began on certain facilities at Great Yarmouth in Norfolk in a bid to support the construction of two offshore wind farms in the pipeline by Innogy SE and Scottish Power Renewables. Some 56 6MW turbines will be provided for one project, while 102 7MW turbines are set to be provided for the East Anglia 1 plant.
Dong Energy itself has also just launched a public consultation process for a 2.4GW Hornsea 3 wind farm, which will be positioned off the coast of East Riding of Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. The consultation will take at least 28 days, with feedback due at the end of November. After this, a second round of consultation events will take place in the latter half of next year.
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