World's most powerful offshore wind turbine unveiled in Fife

Thursday, 31 October, 2013 - 09:45
The world’s largest and most powerful offshore wind turbine is now standing at Energy Park Fife.
Photo: Graham

As Samsung Heavy Industries(SHI) has finalised the installation of its 7 MW prototype the world’s largest offshore wind turbine is now standing at the Energy Park Fife, UK. The structure, which is SHI's first European offshore wind project, is situated 50 m offshore in the Firth of Forth and the tip of its blades stretches 196 metres above the sea.

SHI’s prototype offshore turbine stands at the Energy Park in Fife, Scotland and is due to become operational later this year. The nacelle was installed on October 11, and that was followed by the attachment of the three massive blades. The Korean company has invested £ 70 million in the Fife wind turbine demonstrator scheme, which has the potential to create up to 500 jobs in Scotland.

SHI said that, following a successful testing period, it will work to attract orders for its turbines. This would allow it to build a world-class manufacturing facility at Energy Park Fife. SHI has been manufacturing wind turbines for four years and already has turbines installed in Korea, the US and Canada. It chose to base its European operation at Energy Park Fife because of the area's growing energy cluster and the huge opportunities this presents for supply chain companies, particularly those involved in the offshore wind sector.

The structure of the Fife turbine was installed by Graham Construction, the principal contractor on the project. Leo Martin, Executive Director at Graham, said: “This is a very important project for Graham, one which was both interesting and rewarding. The project was technically challenging and Graham has risen to meet these challenges and has delivered a high quality product on time and within budget. “

SHI worked very closely with both Fife Counciland Scottish Enterpriseas it developed the project, which could help put the area firmly on the map as a major European hub for renewable technology. Maggie McGinlay, Director of Energy and Clean Technologies at Scottish Enterprise, said: “The development of the SHI turbine in Fife is testament to Scotland's growing reputation as a global centre of expertise for the next generation of offshore wind energy technologies. This, along with planned investment from other key players such as Arevaand Gamesa, is helping to create a potential manufacturing hub on the east coast, which would lead to significant opportunities for our supply chain companies.”

Katharina Garus

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