Final Turbine Installed at SSE Renewables' Viking Wind Farm in Shetland
Posted 18/08/2023 14:12
Green energy company SSE Renewables has achieved a significant milestone in the development of its Viking wind farm in Shetland. After over three years since the project's commencement, the installation of the 103rd and final turbine has been completed.
The Viking wind farm, boasting a capacity of 433 megawatts (MW), has seen remarkable progress over the past month, with installation works beginning in February. The last turbine, a Vestas V117 4.3MW model, was installed ahead of schedule, originally targeted for autumn.
SSE Renewables plans to commission the wind farm over the next year, keeping it on track for full completion in 2024. Once operational, the Viking wind farm will be capable of generating up to 1.8 terawatt hours (TWh) of renewable electricity annually. This capacity can power nearly half a million typical British homes, including all households in Shetland.
The project faced challenging weather conditions during construction, including heavy rain, a significant snowstorm, and rolling fog, which reduced visibility. The most ironic challenge, however, was the high wind speeds, which frequently exceeded 78 mph.
Heather Donald, SSE Renewables’ onshore renewables development and construction director, praised the project's progress and highlighted the dedication of those involved in overcoming challenging conditions. The construction of the Viking wind farm involved the collaboration of various contractors, including principal contractor RJ Macleod and turbine manufacturer Vestas.
Around 400 people were involved in the peak construction phase, and Vestas is now focused on awarding contracts and recruiting local operations and maintenance teams, including apprentices, to ensure the wind farm's long-term operation.
Anne Semeria, onshore construction director, UK & Ireland for Vestas, acknowledged the efforts of the team in ensuring safe and high-quality construction. She expressed anticipation for the wind farm's full operation, emphasizing its contribution to achieving the UK and Scotland's net-zero targets.