EAST ANGLIA ONE OFFSHORE WIND FARM

East Anglia ONE is part of the last great offshore wind farm in the United Kingdom

With an installed power capacity of 714 MW, it will provide clean energy to nearly 600,000 British homes. East Anglia ONE will be the world's largest wind farm when it starts operating in 2020.

Location
North Sea (United Kingdom)

Wind turbines number
102 Siemens Gamesa turbines

Total area
300 km2

Total installed capacity
714 MW

Investment
£4.1 billion

Start date
2020

East Anglia ONE
Project

East Anglia ONE will be the world's biggest offshore wind farm when it starts running in 2020, with an installed capacity of 714 MW supplying clean energy to nearly 600,000 British households. Located in the North Sea about 43 kilometers off the coast of Suffolk (UK), this has entailed an investment of £4.1 billion. The Iberdrola group owns 60%, and the remaining 40% is owned by Green Investment Group (GIG), part of the Macquarie group.

FIRST TURBINE INSTALLED

After ten years of work and development, the first turbine of the East Anglia ONE project was installed on June 22, a milestone that marks the beginning of the final phase of the construction process of this windfarm.

It is the first of 102 Siemens Gamesa 7 MW wind turbines, whose components — 75-meter fiber glass blades, tower sections and nacelles (the head of the turbine) — are being pre-assembled at Peel Ports Great Yarmouth, in line with ScottishPower Renewables' commitment to empower the local industry. These elements have been on view all along the seafront of Great Yarmouth, as the 90-meter towers have been built on the pier.

MANUFACTURING THE FIRST BLADE

Siemens Gamesa has manufactured the first blade for the East Anglia ONE wind turbines at its plant in Green Port Hull. Made of fibreglass and measuring 75 meters long — like the wingspan of an Airbus A380 —, this mammoth task involved 850 people working together to produce the first of 306 blades that will be made at this centre.

Once manufactured at the plant in Green Port, after an investment of £160 million, the blades are transported along the coast to Peels Ports Great Yarmouth, where they will proceed to pre-assemble the components of the turbine. A sum of £5 million will be invested in fitting out the facilities for this new task.

INSTALLATION OF ANDALUSIA II SUBSTATION

In July 2018, Iberdrola and Navantia held a handover ceremony for the Andalusia II offshore substation constructed by Navantia entirely in its Puerto Real shipyard for Iberdrola's East Anglia One offshore wind farm in the United Kingdom waters. The event was attended by Ignacio Galán, Chairman of Iberdrola, José Esteban García Vilasánchez, Chairman of Navantia and Susana Díaz, former president of the autonomous region of Andalusia, who acted as patroness of the substation.

In the fabrication of Andalusia II, the biggest AC offshore substation ever constructed in the world, Navantia and some thirty local auxiliary companies participated. The delivery of this unit, achieved in the agreed upon times of 16 months of work, has allowed the creation of an average of 450 jobs — mostly local ones —, which at peak times of work increased to 600 people.

The Andalusia II substation began its sea crossing 4 August from Puerto Real to British waters and travelled 1,333 nautical miles (2,468 kilometres) that separated it from its location in East Anglia ONE, where it was installed on 31 August. Over the next four months around 60 engineers will work around the clock to complete the installation of the equipment needed to commission the substation.

Andalusia II offshore substation will be the central nucleus of East Anglia ONE: its function will be to collect the electricity produced by the wind turbines and transform it from 66 kV to 220 kV. Electricity will be transmitted subsequently through the marine cable to earth, minimising potency losses along the journey.

INSTALLATION OF THE FIRST JACKETS

Iberdrola has started installing the first jacket foundations, constructed by Navantia at its facilities in Fene (Galicia) and the piles, constructed by Windar at its facilities in Avilés (Asturias). Over the next few months, a total of 42 jacket foundations, each with a total height (i.e. including the underwater part) of 65 metres will be installed, together with 126 piles and the other components. For the second time, following the Wikinger offshore wind farm project (in the German part of the Baltic Sea), Iberdrola has commissioned this two companies to develop some of the wind turbine components at their facilities in Spain. Construction of these components is generating one million hours of work, creating an average of 800 jobs and employing as many as 1,300 people at peak points, thus ensuring the continuity of these companies' businesses in Spain and promoting the Spanish shipbuilding sector.

Siemens Gamesa will supply the 102 7-MW turbines for the farm from its new facilities in Hull, in the north-east of England.

On the other hand, the Port of Lowestoft, after an award of contracts by ScottishPower Renewables and the Associated British Ports (ABP), has been the chosen home to carry out the monitoring of this megaproject of offshore wind. The enclave will become a new cutting-edge operations and servicing base involving an investment of £25 million with specialised offices and storage areas. The new building will help to support the offshore phase of construction work on the windfarm, as well as the 30-plus years operational lifespan of the facility.

In total, around 100 people will be employed full-time at the port when East Anglia ONE is completed. With the support of its customers, ABP's Ports of East Anglia, King's Lynn, Lowestoft and Ipswich contribute £340 million to the UK economy every year and support 3,577 jobs in the region and 5,000 jobs nationally.

Apart from that, Lowestoft-based Turner Iceni, the renewable energy vessel specialist, has been awarded a contract exceeding £4 million by ScottishPower Renewables to provide support for the construction of the East Anglia ONE offshore windfarm. The scope of the contract will include the transfer of light plant, tools, spares and personnel to and from the offshore wind turbines, the offshore substation and met mast locations.

ScottishPower also has awarded a contract to the British company Murphy for the onshore cable connection works of the project with a value of approximately €14.7 million. In particular, Murphy will execute the following cable works: excavation, conduit installation, restoration and verification of locations.

MAIN PROJECT DATA

The size of Iberdrola's flagship project is unheard-of in the industry. These are some of the most relevant details:

  • The farm will stand 43 km off the coast and will cover an area of 300 km2, which is equal to 40,000 football pitches.
  • East Anglia ONE will feature 102 turbines each producing 7 MW supplied by Siemens Gamesa. The turbines will have a total height of 235 metres.
  • The sub-station will reach a height of 167 m, two metres taller than the Iberdrola Tower in Bilbao.
  • Two underwater cables measuring 85 km long will be installed to bring the power to the coast. These cables will be linked to the land cables of a specific system.
  • There, six underground cables measuring 37 km each will carry power to the land conversion station.
  • A ground substation will be built beside the one in Bramford (Suffolk) to connect the farm to the national electric grid.

 

 'The East Angle' magazine. Summer 2019 issue: "East Anglia Offshore Windfarm Projects"

 East Anglia ONE: turbines [PDF]

 East Anglia ONE: jacket foundations [PDF]

 East Anglia ONE: offshore substation [PDF]

EAST ANGLIA ONE AND TWO TO FOLLOW

But this new offshore wind farm is part of an even more ambitious project: Iberdrola has applied to the British Government for permission to extend these facilities and has, therefore, submitted a plan to the United Kingdom Authorities for East Anglia TWO (257 km2/800 MW capacity) and THREE (305 km2/1,200 MW capacity).

Likewise, and in response to the company's on-going commitment to wind power research and innovation, ScottishPower, the British subsidiary of Iberdrola, is developing the Frond Mats initiative (vegetation covers) in the waters of the East Anglia ONE offshore wind farm, which uses synthetic undersea vegetation to reduce the effects of currents and is designed to protect wind turbines from the effects of erosion, resulting in huge economic savings.

ONE OF THE LARGEST RENEWABLE ENERGY INSTALLATIONS IN THE WORLD

Through its British subsidiary, ScottishPower Renewables, Iberdrola has received the approval of the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy of the United Kingdom (BEIS) to start-up East Anglia THREE, a new offshore wind farm that will have an installed power of 1,200 megawatts (MW). Therefore, the future East Anglia wind farm will reach a total power capacity of 2,000 MW, becoming one of the largest renewable energy installations in the world.

East Anglia THREE will be located 69 kilometres off the Norfolk coast, close to the London metropolitan area, and shall supply electricity to approximately one million British homes. The aim is to start on the construction work in 2022 and start production in 2025.

OTHER PROJECTS UNDER CONSTRUCTION

Iberdrola, through its subsidiary ScottishPower Renewables is working on other offshore wind power projects, such as:

  • The Saint Brieuc offshore wind farm (496 MW), located in the waters of Saint Brieuc Bay, will supply clean energy to 850,000 households after it is commissioned.

 

 East Anglia ONE: jackets [PDF]

 East Anglia ONE: offshore wind turbine [PDF]

 East Anglia THREE: main data [PDF]