Mainstream Renewable Power has applied to the Scottish Ministers to vary the consent granted by the Scottish Ministers for the Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind farm in October 2014 to increase the maximum rated turbine capacity.
Last year, Mainstream Renewable Power selected Siemens to supply its SWT-6.0-154 wind turbines for the 450MW wind farm and the developer now wants to use Siemens' next-generation 7MW turbines.
The maximum generating capacity will continue to be limited to 450MW, Mainstream said.
The Variation Application also seeks to make the following variations:
- a change in maximum turbine hub height from 107.5m to 115m above lowest astronomical tide;
- a change in maximum turbine platform height from 18m to 21m above lowest astronomical tide; and
- consequential variations to the wind turbine rotation speed and range of speed at blade tip.
Marine Scotland will be carrying out formal consultation on the Variation Application.
The 7MW offshore wind turbine has an upgraded generator and an enhanced electrical system, while the majority of other components are equal to the SWT-6.0-154 – including the rotor with a diameter of 154 meters. The SWT-7.0-154 model yields nearly 10 percent more power than its predecessor at comparable operational costs, according to Siemens.