World's Biggest Offshore Wind Farm Generates First Power
The first turbine at the world’s biggest offshore wind farm has been installed and is now producing electricity. When fully operational, Hornsea 1 offshore wind farm will be nearly double the size (1,218MW) of the current world’s largest offshore wind farm, Walney Extension, and capable of powering well over one million U.K. homes with renewable electricity, generated by wind.
The project is located 120 kilometers off the Yorkshire Coast and will consist of 174 Siemens Gamesa 7MW turbines.
The wind farm is a joint venture between Ørsted and Global Infrastructure Partners. Ørsted, recently voted as the world’s most sustainable energy company, began offshore construction just over a year ago, and expects the project to be completed by Q1 2020.
Matthew Wright, U.K. Managing Director at Ørsted, said: “Hornsea 1 is the first of a new generation of offshore power plants that now rival the capacity of traditional fossil fuel power stations. The ability to generate clean electricity offshore at this scale is a globally significant milestone, at a time when urgent action needs to be taken to tackle climate change.”
To date, 172 out of 174 monopile foundations have been installed at the site, and turbine installation is expected to continue until late summer 2019. The electricity generated by the turbines will pass via undersea cables through one of three massive offshore substations, and the world’s first offshore reactive compensation station, all fully installed, before reaching shore at Horseshoe Point, Lincolnshire. The electricity is then transported via underground cables to the onshore substation in North Killingholme, where it connects to the U.K. National Grid.
Ørsted will generate almost exclusively green energy by 2025 and bring clean energy to more than 50 million people by 2030. Ørsted operates more than 1,100 offshore wind turbines. The company has installed approximately 5.6GW offshore wind capacity and has a further 3.4GW under construction. In addition, Ørsted has secured the rights to build approximately 1GW offshore wind in the U.S. by 2023, approximately 1.1GW in Germany by 2025 and approximately 1.8GW in Taiwan. It is Ørsted’s ambition to have installed a total of 15GW offshore wind capacity worldwide by 2025.