Cornerstone laid in Sassnitz for the Arkona offshore wind farm

Source: E.ON

The Arkona offshore wind power project in the German Baltic Sea has moved from the planning to the construction phase.

The Arkona offshore wind power project in the German Baltic Sea has moved from the planning to the construction phase. The cornerstone for the joint project being carried out by E.ON and Statoil was laid on August 18, 2017, in Sassnitz on the island of Rügen. The symbolic act was attended by, among others, Mecklenburg-Western Pomeranian Minister President Erwin Sellering and Uwe Beckmeyer, Parliamentary State Secretary in the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, as well as Ingo Luge, CEO of E.ON Germany.

Minister President Sellering underscored the fact that "the impressive development of the wind power industry is above all a major collective achievement that comes of the productive and very close degree of cooperation found in our state. It is also a result of the strong sense of solidarity shared throughout the north between the five minister presidents, and which is also found in the business communities, chambers of commerce and associations in the five northern German states. This is what provided a reliable basis for the steady development of the wind energy industry here in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania."

Luge stressed that E.ON is demonstrating once more its offshore expertise through the construction of Arkona project and will further reduce costs compared to previous projects. "As the mainstay of future energy supply, renewables must be able to stand on their own economically going forward. Electricity generation from offshore wind farms has already experienced a considerable learning curve and will soon be able to do just that. Through its high levels of investment, E.ON has made an important contribution toward this end."

Secretary Uwe Beckmeyer said, "Investment in offshore wind farms provides us not only with large quantities of electricity over an operating period of up to 25 years, they also create a great number of jobs during the same period. Offshore wind energy is therefore not just a mild breeze, it brings a strong tailwind that will provide our shores with a reliable supply of power, climate protection and long-term jobs."

While the laying of the cornerstone marked the start of construction of the wind farm operations facility at the Mukran ferry port in Sassnitz, preparations for the offshore construction site are well along with the plan. The construction site is prepared, and the tracks for the cables connecting the turbines to the substation have been surveyed. Progress is also being made on the connection to the grid on the mainland via three submarine cables supplied by the transmission system operator 50Hertz, with two kilometers of cables currently being laid daily. At practically the same time that the groundbreaking ceremony was taking place, EEW Special Pipe Constructions was starting production of the steel foundations in Rostock. Bladt Industries has been manufacturing the house-sized connecting elements since early August in Aalborg, Denmark. E.ON will begin installation of the large components at sea in 2017.

The Arkona project is located 35 kilometers northeast of the island of Rügen. The wind farm will have an installed capacity of 385 megawatts (MW) and is calculated to supply renewable energy to 400,000 households. Compared to electricity generated conventionally, Arkona will save up to 1.2 million tons of CO₂ annually. 60 six-megawatt class turbines made by Siemens are slated for installation. The facilities will rest on mono-pile foundations in 23-37 meters of water.

The Arkona wind farm is scheduled to be fully operational in 2019. With a 50 percent share in the project, the Norwegian Statoil energy group has been a project partner from the start. E.ON will be responsible for the construction and operation of the wind farm. Investment amounts to more than 1.2 billion euros. This will make E.ON the first company to operate its own offshore wind farms in both the German North Sea and the Baltic.

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