The world’s largest offshore wind turbine has already begun generating power, with the GE Renewable Energy 12 MW Haliade-X prototype installed at the Port of Maasvlakte-Rotterdam in the Netherlands beginning to generate and sell power to local utility Eneco.
First announced in March of 2018, GE Renewable Energy’s 12 MW Haliade-X will measure 260 meters in height and boast a 220-meter rotor, capable of generating enough clean electricity for 16,000 households.
As such, attention has been recently focused heavily on the prototype turbines that have been announced and installed – one which is installed at the Port of Rotterdam in the Netherlands, and another which is being sent to ORE Catapult’s testing site in the UK.
This week, marking a significant milestone for the development of the Haliade-X and its eventual deployment – currently scheduled for 2021 – GE Renewable Energy, Future Wind (a Joint Venture between Pondera Development and SIF Holding Netherlands responsible for the first prototype testing site), and Netherlands natural gas, electricity, and heat utility Eneco, announced that Eneco will purchase all the electricity generated by the first prototype currently installed at the Port of Maasvlakte-Rotterdam.
The agreement will now allow Eneco to sell the clean electricity generated by the prototype Haliade-X to its customers.
Specifically, and highlighting the importance of a turbine with such a mammoth individual generating capacity, the first Haliade-X prototype set a new world record this past weekend by being the first wind turbine ever to generate 262 MWh of clean energy within 24 hours – enough to power 30,000 households, all on its own.
Already selected as the preferred wind turbine for 4,800 MW worth of offshore wind farms – including the 120 MW Skip Jack and 1,100 MW Ocean Wind projects in the US, and the 3,600 MW Dogger Bank project in the UK – and with serial production expected to begin in the second half of 2021, the current deployment of prototypes is intended to subject the turbine to a battery of tests to validate its power curve, loads, grid performance, and reliability.
Prototype testing will also allow GE to validate the operational procedures for installation and services teams, while obtaining a Type Certificate next year.
“We are very proud of our cooperation with Future Wind and GE Renewable Energy, as it enables Eneco to purchase the green power produced by the Haliade-X prototype and to get hands on experience with this innovative and powerful new turbine that represents the future of offshore wind energy,” said Frans van de Noort, COO of Eneco.
“We are glad to be able to collaborate with GE Renewable Energy and having the world’s first 12 MW wind turbine installed at our SiF site in Rotterdam,” added Diederik de Bruin, Project Manager at Future Wind.
“We believe this milestone is relevant not only for the global offshore wind industry, but also proves how Dutch companies (such as SiF and Pondera) are engaged with the development of renewable energy.”
“Along with the industry’s compelling value proposition, technology innovation is a key driver of the offshore wind market,” said John Lavelle, CEO of Offshore Wind at GE Renewable Energy. “Because it is the most powerful machine in the industry, the Haliade-X allows our customers to drive down the cost of wind energy and speed the adoption of clean, renewable energy.
The testing that the prototype will undergo is one part of a multi-faceted testing process that will enable us to commercialize the Haliade-X by 2021, just in time for the strong growth uptick we are seeing in offshore wind worldwide.”