Windfarm operator Ørsted, which was formerly known as Dong Energy, has announced that its Race Bank windfarm is now ready to generate up to its full capacity of 573 MW.
All 91 of the Siemens Gamesa 6 MW turbines, many of which feature blades manufactured at Siemens’ factory in Hull, successfully passed their 240-hour acceptance tests. Another 200-hour test of the entire windfarm was also completed successfully. In addition, despite installation only beginning in May 2017, the windfarm has already surpassed 1 terawatt hour of production during the commissioning process.
Ørsted’s Project Director for Race Bank, David Summers, talked enthusiastically about the development, describing both hitting full capacity and passing the 1 terawatt mark as “fantastic milestones”. He went on to praise the dedication and work-rate shown by many to raise them.
The Race Bank windfarm is off the east coast of England and occupies some 46 square miles. When the project is officially opened in summer, it will power up to half a million homes.
When the Race Bank windfarm goes into service, it will be the first offshore windfarm to make use of a service operation vehicle (SOV). While offshore wind power has many advantages over its land-based counterparts, operation and maintenance, such as ensuring adequate lubrication with products like Mobilith SHC 220, is generally more challenging in a marine environment. The new SOV, however, will stay out at sea with the operations and maintenance team for up to four weeks at a time, greatly improving maintenance efficiency.