Beatrice Wind Farm

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Beatrice Wind Farm
Wind turbine at Nigg.jpg
5 MW wind turbine under construction for Beatrice at Nigg fabrication yard on the Cromarty Firth
Country
  • United Kingdom
LocationMoray Firth, North Sea
Coordinates58°7′48″N 3°4′12″W / 58.13000°N 3.07000°W / 58.13000; -3.07000Coordinates: 58°7′48″N 3°4′12″W / 58.13000°N 3.07000°W / 58.13000; -3.07000
StatusOperational
Commission date2007 (Pilot) 2018 (Commercial)
Construction cost£2.6bn
Owner(s)Scottish and Southern Energy
Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners
Red Rock Power Limited
Wind farm
TypeOffshore
Max. water depth45m
Distance from shore13km
Hub height101m
Rotor diameter154m
Power generation
Units operational2 × 5 MW REpower (Evaluation),
84 × 7MW Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy (Commercial)
Nameplate capacity10 MW (Pilot)
588MW Final Phase (Site 6, Scottish Territorial Waters)
External links
Websitewww.beatricewind.com

The Beatrice Offshore Wind Farm now known as Beatrice Offshore Windfarm Ltd (BOWL) project, is a wind farm close to the Beatrice oil field in the Moray Firth, part of the North Sea 13 km off the north east coast of Scotland.

History[edit]

Evaluation project[edit]

Beatrice Wind Farm Demonstrator Project was a joint venture between Scottish and Southern Energy and Talisman Energy (UK) to build and operate an evaluation wind farm in the deep water close to the Beatrice Oil field that Talisman Energy is planning on decommissioning in the near future.[1]

Built in 2007, with two turbines and a total capacity of 10 MW, it was designed to examine the feasibility of building a commercial wind farm in deep water at a reasonable distance from the shore. The jacket foundation design was developed by the Norwegian company OWEC Tower AS,[2] and fabricated in Scotland by Burntisland Fabrications. The site is 13 km from the Scottish coast and in 45 m of water. The evaluation project was proposed to last five years.[3] All the electricity generated is fed to the nearby Beatrice Alpha oil platform.

Planned expansion[edit]

In February 2009, the partnership of SSE Renewables and Repsol Nuevas Energias UK, was awarded exclusivity by The Crown Estate to develop the Beatrice offshore wind farm in the Outer Moray Firth just to the north of the existing demonstrator turbines. In April 2014, the UK Energy Secretary Ed Davey announced that the Beatrice Wind Farm would be one of eight projects awarded a contract for difference to set the price paid for its power for the next 15 years.[4]

On 23 May 2016 approval was given for a £2.6bn expansion of the wind farm to 84 turbines with a capacity of 588MW of electricity, enough to supply 450,000 homes.[5]

In June 2016 contracts were awarded to the Global Energy Group, in association with Siemens Wind Power, for fabrication and assembly of the turbines at Nigg Energy Park in Ross Shire, and to Wick Harbour for the assembly and transport process. Several other Highland towns are expected to benefit during the construction phase due to the expected influx of workers. Work began in April 2017.

Construction and grid connection[edit]

Offshore construction began in April 2017.[6] As of 15 May 2018, 56 of the total 84 turbine and 2 OTM jackets had been installed, first power from the main phase was generated in July 2018, with full commissioning expected to follow in spring 2019.[7][8][9]

In January 2019, the wind farm was connected to the new Caithness - Moray Link. The high voltage direct current link enables power generated at Beatrice and other projects to be sent to high population areas in southern Scotland.[10]

The link which runs from Caithness to Moray, which comes ashore at Portgordon in Moray, is connected to the new Beatrice/BOWL thence to Blackhillock Substation near Keith in Moray, the UK's biggest electricity substation as of January 2019.[10]

Installation and commissioning for all 84 turbines was completed on 15 May 2019.[11]

Controversy[edit]

In October 2018 details emerged that migrant workers were being used increasingly in the construction phase.

It came out that 11 Russian Workers were arrested at Aberdeen Airport in 2017 as they were working illegally on Seafarers documents.[12]

In an unexpected move, the UK Home Office granted a 6-month waiver so that the crew could continue to work. This has been extended twice until 2019.[12]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Beatrice Wind Farm Demonstrator Project, at a cost of €41 million, saw two 5MW wind turbines installed adjacent to the Beatrice oil field, 25 km off the east coast of Scotland". Beatrice Demonstrator Website. Archived from the original on 17 February 2014.
  2. ^ "OWEC Tower AS". OWEC Tower Website. Archived from the original on 20 August 2011.
  3. ^ "Beatrice Farm Demonstrator - Project Summary" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 October 2011.
  4. ^ Amos, Ilona (24 April 2014). "Backing for wind farm that will push up bills". The Scotsman.
  5. ^ "Beatrice". sse.com. Archived from the original on 29 June 2016. Retrieved 28 June 2016.
  6. ^ "Building Beatrice offshore - Offshore Construction".
  7. ^ "First power exported from Beatrice Offshore Wind Farm". BBC News. 19 July 2018.
  8. ^ White, Matthew (15 May 2018). "Beatrice jackets up to a total 56". 4C Offshore.
  9. ^ "Beatrice Turbines One Third Done". 18 October 2018.
  10. ^ a b Keane, Kevin (11 January 2019). "Major subsea electricity link completed". BBC News. Retrieved 11 January 2019.
  11. ^ PoliticsHome.com (15 May 2019). "Offshore construction completed at Scotland's largest offshore wind farm". PoliticsHome.com. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  12. ^ a b Lawrence, Felicity; McSweeney, Ella (21 October 2018). "Migrants building £2.6bn windfarm paid fraction of minimum wage". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 12 January 2019.

External links[edit]