Gunfleet Sands Offshore Wind Farm
|Gunfleet Sands 1 & 2|
The farm from a passing ship, 30 September 2010
Location of Gunfleet Sands 1 & 2 in Essex
|Country||England, United Kingdom|
|Location||Northern Thames Estuary 7 km (4.3 mi) off Clacton-on-Sea, Essex|
|Owner(s)||DONG Energy (51%)|
|Make and model||Siemens Wind Power SWT-3.6-107|
The 108MW Gunfleet Sands 1 wind farm gained planning consent in 2003/4; in 2006 Dong Energy acquired the project and submitted an application for a second 64MW windfarm Gunfleet Sands 2 adjacent to the first, which received consent in 2008. Construction of both wind farms using Siemens Wind Power SWT-3.6-107 took place between 2008 and 2010.
In 2010 planning began on a demonstration project Gunfleet Sands 3, used to test Siemens' 6MW wind turbine model; two 6MW turbines were installed in 2013.
Gunfleet Sands 1 & 2
Gunfleet Sands 1 & 2 are located 7 km south east of Clacton-on-Sea, Essex, UK; in water at depths of 2 to 15 m (6 ft 7 in to 49 ft 3 in) (spring tidal range ~4.6m); Gunfleet 1 consists of 30 turbines in a 5x6 array, whilst Gunfleet 2 consists of a 9x2 array of turbines directly adjacent to the southeast; the installed capacities are 108 and 64MW respectively. The average wind speed is 8.8 m/s (29 ft/s) at 60m elevation.
The offshore turbines connect to a 33kV offshore substation, which steps up the tranmission voltage to 132kV; the export cable makes landfall at Holland Haven (nr. Holland-on-Sea), and underground cables connect it to the National Grid at the Cooks Green substation.
Development of an offshore wind farm site near Clacton-on-Sea began in 1996 under Windmaster Developments; Windmaster was acquired by Enron in 2000, and passed to General Electric (GE Wind Energy) in 2002. A Round 1 concession for the development was awarded in 2001, and planning consents obtained in 2003/4.
In June 2006 a consent application and environmental statement was submitted to the Department of Trade and Industry for permission to build and operate an extension (Gunfleet Sands 2) to the originally consented project, including up to 22 further turbines with an additional capacity of 64MW. In December 2006 Dong Energy acquired the 100MW "Gunfleet 1" project from GE.
Planning application for Gunfleet Sands 2 was submitted to the Department for Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform in June 2007, and permission was received in 2008.
Construction began in 2008, with initial work including onshore infrastructure and cable installation. A formal groundbreaking ceremony was held in April 2008. The first turbine was installed in April 2009.
MT Højgaard was contracted to instal the monopile foundations; work started in October 2008; Sif supplied the monopiles and transition pieces, and Smulders supplied the wind turbine foundations,
Electrical generation from the partially complete wind farm began in August 2009. The wind farm was fully operational by March 2010; the wind farm was formally opened on 15 June 2010 by Anders Eldrup (Dong Energy) and UK Energy minister Charles Hendry. Cost of the development was 4 billion Danish Kroner. Large scale development of wind farms in the UK was made possible by generous subsidies - in 2010 wind farms were receiving 1.20 Danish Kroner per kWh, compared to approximately 0.50 Kroner (Horns Rev 2) in Denmark.
The electrical transmission assets of the wind farm were divested in July 2011 to TC Gunfleet Sands OFTO Limited in response to changes in governmental legislation. In September 2011 Marubeni Corporation acquired a 49.9% shareholding of the project for £200 million. In 2013 Marubeni divested part of its stake to the Development Bank of Japan.
Gunfleet Sands 3
|Gunfleet Sands 3|
|Official name||Gunfleet Sands demonstration project|
|Make and model||Siemens Wind Power SWT-6.0-120|
A planning application for the Gunfleet Sands 3 - Demonstration Project (GFS 3) was submitted in 2010. The project consisted of a wind farm about 1 km2 (0.39 sq mi) 8.5 km southeast of Clacton-on-Sea, and adjacent to the Gunfleet 1 & 2 wind farms but southeast of them. The site was intended to be provide the facility to test new wind farm equipment in preparation of the Round 3 wind farm letting process. 2 wind turbine installations were proposed.
The development required a separate export cable and grid connection to the Gunfleet 1&2 farms; a planning application for the onshore electrical facilities and cabling was submitted in November 2011. Inter array and export cables (33kV) were supplied by JDR Cables.
The site began generating power in April 2013. Damage to one of the turbines blade tips necessitated blade replacement in mid 2013. The facility was official opened 12 September 2013 by UK Energy Minister Greg Barker.
- Wind power in the United Kingdom
- List of offshore wind farms in the United Kingdom
- List of offshore wind farms in the North Sea
- List of offshore wind farms
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- About Gunfleet Sands (Dong) Operation and maintenance
- (08/01225/FUL) Demolition of existing boat building yard and outbuildings and erection of new three storey office accommodation ..., Tendring District Council, 29 August 2009
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Gunfleet Sands Wind Farm.|
"Gunfleet Sands Offshore Wind Farm 7km off Clacton On Sea Essex", www.youtube.com (BBC)