London Array fully powered and producing green electricity
Full capacity has now been reached at the 630MW first phase of the world's largest offshore wind farm, the London Array. The commissioning of the 175th and final turbine happened at 16.09 on Saturday, 6 April.
With all turbines now exporting power to the national grid, London Array is expected to produce enough green electricity to power nearly half a million homes a year.
Turbine installation was completed in December 2012; since then the project has focused on fully commissioning and putting into operation all 175 of the 3.6MW Siemens turbines by this spring.
"This is the final major milestone of the construction phase and the culmination of more than two years' offshore construction work which began in March 2011 with the installation of the first foundation," said Project Director Richard Rigg.
"It has been a complex operation but I am delighted that the commissioning of the wind farm has now been completed on schedule, despite the worst of the winter weather."
The project has started handing over to the Operations and Maintenance Team. This will be completed in the summer when the last shallow array cable has been buried.
Benj Sykes, Country Manager for DONG Energy's UK Wind business, said: "Building London Array, the world's largest offshore wind farm, is a great achievement.
"As we now look to our pipeline of future projects, DONG Energy is determined to drive down the costs of our offshore wind farms to €100 per megawatt hour for projects we'll be sanctioning in 2020.
"What we have learnt at London Array, together with our continuing focus on innovation in technologies and techniques, will help us achieve that."
Tony Cocker, Chief Executive Officer of E.ON UK, commented: "London Array is a significant achievement in renewable energy. The world's largest operational offshore wind farm will be capable of generating enough energy to power nearly half a million homes and reduce harmful CO2 emissions by over 900,000 tonnes a year.
"It's been a tough time for the team working on site. The recent bad weather and north easterly winds have whipped up the waves preventing access to the site so this milestone is true reward for their hard work."
Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, Chief Executive Officer of Masdar, said: "Just over two years ago, we celebrated the first of 177 foundation installations in this massive undertaking. Today, after overcoming challenges on both land and at sea, we celebrate the commissioning of the final turbine.
"As a partner in some of the world's most sophisticated and large-scale renewable energy projects, Masdar recognises the value of robust collaborative efforts as exemplified by the London Array. Masdar is proud to be contributing to the United Kingdom's clean energy mix and remains committed to growing offshore wind capacity in the UK and worldwide."
London Array is being built around 20km off the coasts of Kent and Essex on a 245km2 site. Phase One covers an area of 90km2 and includes 175 turbines with a combined capacity of 630MW. A possible second phase could add enough capacity to bring the total to 870MW.
The project consortium partners have the following shareholdings: DONG Energy owns 50%, E.ON has 30% and Masdar has a 20% stake.
Notes to editors:
DONG Energy is one of the leading offshore wind farm developers in the world, with more than 20 years' experience in the wind power industry and we have built every third wind farm in Europe. The UK is one of DONG Energy's primary markets for developing offshore wind and so far we have invested £3 billion in UK renewables since 2005. The London Array is the latest of five offshore wind farms to be commissioned by DONG Energy in the UK and we have Lincs and West of Duddon Sands under construction with partners. We are also constructing the Gunfleet Sands demonstration project to test the next generation of larger turbines and have started works on the Westermost Rough project off the East coast. DONG Energy is also constructing the 400 MW offshore wind farm, Anholt in Denmark and Borkum Riffgrund 1 in Germany.
We are headquartered in Denmark. Our business is based on procuring, producing, distributing and trading in energy and related products in Northern Europe. We have approximately 6,000 employees and generated DKK 57 billion (EUR 7.6 billion) in revenue in 2011. For further information, see http://www.dongenergy.com/.
E.ON is one of the world's leading power and gas companies. With annual sales of more than €82 billion and around 79,000 employees, it is one of the world's largest investor-owned power and gas companies. E.ON is active in onshore and offshore wind, concentrating solar power (CSP), solar PV and biomass and currently has over 4.2GW of renewable capacity in operation, which makes it a leading global renewable player.
E.ON is committed to being a leading player in the offshore wind industry and it already owns and operates three offshore wind farms in UK waters. The UK's first offshore wind farm near Blyth in Northumberland, Scroby Sands off the coast of Great Yarmouth and Robin Rigg in the Solway Firth.E.ON is currently carrying out detailed environmental studies on its proposed Rampion site off the Sussex Coast and has been granted planning approval to build the Humber Gateway offshore wind farm, which would be located off the Holderness Coast in the East Riding of Yorkshire.
E.ON is committed to growing its offshore wind fleet across Europe and it intends to invest €7 billion in its offshore programme over the next five years, through creating industrial-scale wind, solar and biomass power plants. http://www.eon.com/
Masdar is Abu Dhabi's renewable energy company advancing the development, commercialisation and deployment of clean energy technologies and solutions. The company serves as a link between today's fossil fuel economy and the energy economy of the future. Backed by the Mubadala Development Company, the strategic investment company of the government of Abu Dhabi, Masdar is dedicated to the Emirate's long-term vision for the future of energy.
Masdar entered into the London Array scheme when it purchased 40% of E.ON's half share of the London Array scheme, giving Masdar a 20% stake in the project overall. The London Array investment is part of Masdar's global alternative energy strategy which includes solar, wind and other renewable technologies. Masdar, which works with a range of innovative renewable energy companies and utilities, is continuously growing its portfolio of investments, partnerships and production capabilities in the renewable energy and clean technology sectors.
For more information contact:
Joanne Haddon Joanne.Haddon@eon-uk.com or 07738 604337
Janet Heald Janet.Heald@eon-uk.com or 02476 183692