RWE announced the Nordsee Ost wind farm has been officially inaugurated. The inauguration was attended by the German Minister of Economics, Sigmar Gabriel, as well as Peter Terium, CEO of RWE AG, Hans Bünting, CEO of RWE Innogy, and Mel Kroon, CEO of Tennet.
With an installed capacity of 295 megawatts, Nordsee Ost is one of the largest wind farms off the German coast. It is located about 35 kilometers north of Heligoland and covers approx. 24 km2, with water depths of up to 25 meters. In total, 48 wind turbines will produce sufficient green power to supply the equivalent of about 320,000 households annually.
Sigmar Gabriel, German Minister of Economics: “Offshore wind energy is a strategically important element of Germany’s energy and climate policy and is key to the success of the energy transition. Thanks to its continuous input into the grid and its high electricity yields, offshore power generation makes a crucial contribution towards a diversified and reliable energy supply system."
Peter Terium, CEO of RWE AG: “The expansion of renewable energy is one of our main growth areas and offshore wind energy will play a vital role. RWE will become the third largest player in the European offshore market this year. And we are growing further: In only one month’s time, we will be commissioning another wind farm, Gwynt y Môr, located off the coast of Wales.
We are developing and operating additional offshore projects alone and with partners in Germany, the UK and the Benelux region.?
Hans Bünting, CEO of RWE Innogy, adds: “At the end of this year, 40% of our power generation from renewables will already come from offshore power production. Thanks to the Nordsee Ost and Gwynt y Môr offshore wind farms our operating result will see double-digit growth."
Olaf Scholz, First Mayor of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg:
“Today, it is inconceivable to imagine an energy transition without offshore wind farms as these are the only plants that are capable of nearly supplying base-load power. The offshore wind technology also offers great potential for creating value, jobs, innovations and export opportunities.
RWE invested more than one billion euros in the construction of the wind farm. In addition, the European Union contributed a total of 50 million euros to the realisation of Nordsee Ost as one of the lighthouse projects in the field of renewable energies.
Construction was carried out from the base port in Bremerhaven. The foundations, tower segments, nacelles and rotor blades were stored, pre-assembled and loaded onto the installation vessels “Victoria Mathias” and “Friedrich Ernestine” at the Eurogate Container Terminal.
Impressing dimensions in the North Sea
The individual components of the Nordsee Ost wind farm impress through their huge dimensions: With around 160 metres from sea level to the tip of the blade, the wind turbines stand higher than Cologne Cathedral. Each nacelle has a weight of approx. 350 tonnes and the dimensions of a detached house. Each rotor blade is more than 60 metres long and weighs 23 tonnes. This equates to the weight of about six fully-grown elephants.
During construction, more than 60 kilometers of underwater cable were laid. That is about the length of the Eurotunnel which connects the UK with continental Europe. All 48 wind turbines and the substation have been linked by these so-called inter-array cables. The installation vessels covered around 137,000 nautical miles (250,000 km) during the installation of the foundations and turbines. They could have equally travelled around the world more than six times. The installation vessels were loaded with the components at the base port in Bremerhaven from where they were transported some 100 km to the construction field.