A hat-trick of offshore wind industry firsts has been achieved within a fortnight in North-East Scotland after the world’s most powerful single turbine was installed on Monday, 09 April, for Vattenfall’s European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC).
The turbine is the first of eleven to be deployed at the demonstration facility in Aberdeen Bay.
In addition, Vattenfall has confirmed that it is one of two turbines that have been significantly enhanced with further internal power modes to generate more energy from the EOWDC.
The two turbines have each increased from 8.4MW to 8.8MW and yesterday’s installation represents the first time an 8.8MW model has been deployed commercially in the offshore wind industry.
Together with the nine 8.4MW turbines, this boosts the EOWDC’s output to 93.2MW.
The installation of the first turbine comes less than two weeks after the first of the EOWDC’s suction bucket jacket foundations was installed. The EOWDC is the first offshore wind project to deploy the suction bucket jacket foundations at commercial scale, and pairing them with the world’s most powerful turbines represents another industry first.
Gunnar Groebler, Vattenfall’s Head of Business Area Wind, said: “The turbines for the EOWDC, Scotland’s largest offshore wind test and demonstration facility, help secure Vattenfall’s vision to be fossil fuel free within one generation. The EOWDC, through its innovative approach to cost reduction and pioneering technologies, leads the industry drive towards generating clean and competitive wind energy power – one that will reinforce Scotland’s global energy status.”
MHI Vestas has specially designed the V164-8.4 MW and V164-8.8 MW turbines which all have a tip height of 191 metres. Each blade is 80m long – slightly taller than Aberdeen’s Marischal College – and the 164m rotor has a circumference larger than that of the London Eye’s.
EOWDC project director at Vattenfall, Adam Ezzamel, said: “The first turbine installation is a significant achievement and credit to the diligence and engineering know-how of the project team and contractors. For it to be one of the 8.8MW models makes it an even more momentous moment because it further endorses the EOWDC as a world-class hub of offshore wind innovation.”
The turbines are being transported from Esbjerg to Aberdeen by Swire Blue Ocean’s vessel, the Pacific Orca, where they are lifted into position on the installed foundations.
MHI Vestas Chief Operations Officer, Flemming Ougaard, said: “We are very pleased to have installed the first of 11 turbines at Aberdeen Bay. Our collaboration with Vattenfall not only provides clean wind energy for the UK, but also is an important opportunity for us to gain valuable experience with several different technologies. We look forward to the successful installation of the remaining turbines.”