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First of 100 turbines goes up at Moray East offshore windfarm

By Lorna Thompson

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A HUGE Moray Firth offshore windfarm project has reached a milestone moment with the installation of the first of its 100 turbines.

The first 9.5MW turbine at the Moray East offshore windfarm, Scotland's largest infrastructure project, was completed today.

This comes after Moray East announced the completion of jacket installation, with 100 three-legged steel foundations installed on the seabed, in December.

Moray East WTG package manager Ewan Watson said: "A turbine is the most iconic representation of the new offshore wind industry, and I am delighted to issue images of Moray East’s first turbine, a proudly towering 200m representation of engineering success against some of the most challenging circumstances the world has known."

The project's head of construction, Enrique Alvarez Cordobes, said: "This has demanded precision engineering with massive components, requiring excellent co-operation and co-ordination between a range of companies both on land and at sea, and I would like to offer my thanks and congratulations to all those who have made this most distinctive and visible milestone possible."

The first turbine is erected at Moray East offshore windfarm, 15 miles from the shore in the Moray Firth.
The first turbine is erected at Moray East offshore windfarm, 15 miles from the shore in the Moray Firth.

Moray East project director Marcel Sunier said: "Moray East is the country’s largest infrastructure project, and a massive amount of effort, represented by tonnes of steel and kilometres of cable, much of this below ground or sea, have been required to get us to this point.

"I am delighted to be able to announce one of the project’s most visible and distinctive milestones – the safe and successful installation of our first wind turbine.

"This is a truly amazing team effort considering the circumstances under which the teams had to work to achieve that important milestone. The resilience and good co-operation was one of the key factors in achieving this.

"I am looking forward to see the remaining 99 wind turbines being installed safely and successfully during the forthcoming months and wish to thank all those involved in making this happen."

Turbine components have been arriving in the Moray Firth, where they have been stored and preserved onshore, with pre-assembly work carried out at Global Energy’s facility at Nigg.

The turbine components are loaded onto an installation vessel and taken to the site 15 miles offshore.

When complete, Moray East will have the capacity to power 950,000 UK homes. It is expected to be fully operational by 2022.

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