Iberdrola inaugurates Wikinger offshore wind farm

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The first offshore wind farm one hundred per cent designed and operated by a Spanish company

Iberdrola has officially cut the ribbon on Wikinger offshore wind farm, one of the company’s most iconic power plants in the world, having invested over €1.4 billion. Wikinger is fully operational and its 350 MW are connected to the German grid, supplying efficient renewable energy to 350,000 homes (representing some 20% of the energy demand of the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern). This flow of clean energy will have a positive environmental impact since it displaces the emission of nearly 600,000 tons of CO2 per year.

The Wikinger project marks Iberdrola’s entry into the German electricity market, where it has just been awarded the construction of two other offshore wind farms: Baltic Eagle (476 MW) and Wikinger Süd (10 MW). Together with Wikinger, these three wind farms, located off the island of Rügen, will give rise
to the largest offshore wind complex in the Baltic Sea, with a total installed capacity of 836 MW and a combined investment of €2.5 billion.

Wikinger is the first offshore wind farm to be designed and operated one hundred per cent by a Spanish company. It has consolidated Iberdrola as Europe’s leading company in renewable energy, capable of developing projects in markets as competitive as Germany and meeting the demanding planning conditions set by German authorities. In addition, it has served to boost the entire supply chain, benefiting companies across Europe, including Navantia and Windar.

This project has come to fruition thanks to the multidisciplinary and multinational composition of the team set up by Iberdrola and its network of first-rate international suppliers and contractors. Over 2,000 employees from 20 different countries participated in this milestone project. Iberdrola has had to overcome the technological challenges inherent to this type of work and the difficulties arising from the extreme weather conditions in the Baltic Sea.

Wikinger, a mark for Iberdrola

Located off the north-east coast of the German island of Rügen, Wikinger brings together the main themes of Iberdrola’s strategy: strong investment in the development of renewable energies, commitment to reducing emissions, technological innovation, international growth, opening of new markets and business lines to its suppliers, and an important boost for the European naval industry.

To build the project, 280 piles were installed. Measuring 40 metres in length by 2.5 m in diameter, and a unit weight of 150 t, they were all built by Spanish company Windar. A total of 70 foundations were laid on them, each weighing 620 t, manufactured by Bladt Industries in Lindo (Denmark) and Navantia, at its shipyard in Fene (Spain).

The 5-MW Siemens Gamesa AD 5-135 wind turbines were manufactured in the company’s plants in Bremerhaven and Stade (Germany). These are the wind turbines with the highest power rating and largest dimensions that Iberdrola has installed thus far. With a total height of 165 m, they are made up of a 75-m high tower, a 222-t nacelle and a 135-m diameter rotor, with each blade measuring 67 m long.

Finally, one of Wikinger’s key pieces of infrastructure is the Andalucía offshore substation, which will be used jointly by Iberdrola and 50Hertz, an electricity system operator in Germany. Weighing around 8,500 tonnes, the energy heart of the wind farm was also built by Navantia in Puerto Real in southern Spain.

Commitment to offshore wind power

Offshore wind energy is one of the keys to Iberdrola’s growth and the company has undertaken notable projects in this sector in the United Kingdom, Germany and France. These large investments will help advance the transition to a decarbonised energy model and combat climate change. These are the main projects underway:

West of Duddon Sands (WoDS): Located in the Irish Sea, WoDS was the first offshore wind farm the Iberdrola Group was involved in. It was developed by the company in consortium with Orsted and came into operation in 2014. It has 389 MW capacity and the investment was over £1.6 billion.

East Anglia One (EAO): Mega-project currently under construction in British waters in the North Sea, it will become one of the world’s largest offshore wind farms when it starts operating in 2020. It will involve an estimated investment of £2.5 billion and have a capacity of 714 MW.

Saint-Brieuc: This 496-MW facility will be located 20 km off the coast of Brittany in northern France, about 100 kilometres from the city of Rennes. It will have 62 Siemens-Gamesa turbines, with 8 MW unit capacity.

Vineyard Wind: Iberdrola, through Vineyard Wind, recently received authorisation from the Massachusetts Electric Distribution Companies (EDC) to construct a wind farm off the north-east coast of the United States. The project, which represents the company’s first large-scale offshore wind farm venture in that country will have 800 MW capacity.

Source: Iberdrola