First Turbine Installed at World’s Largest Offshore Wind Farm

Hornsea 1 turbine
Photo: Orsted

The first turbine at the soon-to-be world’s biggest offshore wind farm has been installed and is now producing electricity off of England’s coast.

When fully operational, the 1,218-megawatt Hornsea 1 offshore wind farm will be nearly double the size of the current world’s largest offshore wind farm, Walney Extension, and capable of powering well over one million homes in the UK with renewable electricity.

The project is located 120km off the Yorkshire Coast and will consist of 174 Siemens 7MW turbines. The majority of wind farm’s blades are manufactured in Hull, from where they are shipped to the Hornsea zone.

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 wind farm is a joint venture between Ørsted, a global leader in offshore wind, and Global Infrastructure Partners.

Ørsted began offshore construction and little over a year ago and expects the project to be completed by Q1 2020.

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 will connect to the UK grid.

“Hornsea 1 is the first of a new generation of offshore power plants that now rival the capacity of traditional fossil fuel power stations,” said Matthew Wright, UK Managing Director at Ørsted. “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.”

“Ten years ago, the thought of a project of this size was just a dream, but thanks to continued innovation, a determined effort from both the industry and supply chain to drive down costs, and the natural geographical benefits that surround us, the UK has positioned itself as a world-leader in offshore wind,” Wright added.