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31st May 2017, UK

Burbo Bank boost for UK wind power

Each of the 32 turbines installed at the new Burbo Bank Extension offshore windfarm in the UK, which was officially opened at a ceremony held in Anfield Stadium Liverpool this month, are taller than London’s Gherkin tower, at 195metres from sea level to blade tip.

They employ composite blades that weigh 35 tons each and are 80 metres long. These were built on the Isle of Wight by MHI Vestas and combined, will meet the electricity demand of well over 230,000 homes in the Merseyside area.

© Dong Energy

The wind farm is a joint venture between Denmark’s Dong Energy and its partners PKA and Kirkbi, the parent company of the Lego Group (25%). This is the first offshore wind farm in the world to make commercial use of the MHI Vestas V164-8.0 MW wind turbines, just one of which produces more energy than the whole of Vindeby – the world's first offshore windfarm constructed by Dong Energy 25 years ago in Denmark.

 “Burbo Bank Extension showcases the rapid innovation in the offshore wind industry,” said Dong Energy CEO Henrik Poulsen. “Less than ten years ago at Burbo Bank, we were the first to install Siemens 3.6MW wind turbines and in this short time, the wind turbines have more than doubled in capacity. “Pushing innovation in this way reduces the cost of electricity from offshore wind and will help to advance the offshore wind industry across the world. The project has also helped to develop the UK supply chain. It is the first offshore windfarm to use UK manufactured blades and the order for transition pieces was the first for Teesside factory Offshore Structures Britain.”

© Dong Energy

 The V164-8.0 MW turbine from MHI Vestas is the world’s most powerful available turbine and produces renewable energy more efficiently than any other wind turbine in history. It turbine has helped lower the cost of offshore wind energy by enabling developers such as Dong Energy to run fewer, larger turbines.

 “The inauguration of Burbo Bank Extension represents a noteworthy milestone in the history of MHI Vestas and our stakeholders,” said CEO Jens Tommerup. “We are extremely proud to supply 32 of our 8 MW turbines to Dong Energy and help provide renewable energy for more than 230,000 UK homes.”

© MHI Vestas

The turbine blades were designed, tested and manufactured at the MHI Vestas blade factory on the Isle of Wight and are the first locally built blades to be installed at a UK offshore wind farm. This R&D facility was opened in 2011, specifically designed to develop the large blades.

In 2016, the first blades arrived at MHI Vestas’ pre-assembly site in Belfast Harbour. This site was the first bespoke terminal of its kind designed exclusively for offshore wind. These activities demonstrate the industrialisation of the supply chain as the offshore wind industry develops in the UK.

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