Per Fluor Corporation press release:
Fluor Corporation, Dallas, TX, (NYSE: FLR) announced Wednesday that it has signed a contract with Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE) to design and construct the 500 megawatt (MW) Greater Gabbard Offshore Wind Farm. The venture is the world's largest offshore wind farm project to move into the construction phase and will be built approximately 25 kilometers off the Suffolk coast of the United Kingdom (UK). The new award will be booked in the company’s second quarter of 2008 and is worth approximately $1.8 billion (£900 million). . . .
The first UK offshore wind farm to be built outside territorial waters, the project will feature 140 wind turbines each having a rated capacity of 3.6 MW. The turbines will be supplied by Siemens Wind Power A/S under a separate contract with SSE. Fluor will be responsible for the installation of the turbines which will be mounted on steel monopiles and transition pieces in water depths between 24 and 34 meters. A new electricity substation will be built near Sizewell, Suffolk, UK.
Construction work is scheduled to commence for the offshore site in summer 2009, with work to prepare the site for the onshore substation already underway. The wind farm will be commissioned in two phases, with the entire construction scheduled to be completed in 2011. . . .
“The success of the Greater Gabbard Wind Farm will clearly establish Fluor as a leader in the rapidly growing market to develop and construct large-scale offshore wind farms,” said . “Wind farms represent just one aspect of Fluor’s strategy of applying our expertise and resources to assist clients in making meaningful reductions in carbon emissions and providing significant amounts of new, clean and renewable energy.”
Stephen Dobbs, senior group president of Fluor
This award of a project of this size and to a major engineering and construction company is a sign that wind power has reached maturity. A $1.8 billion project, without the turbines as I read it, is a major project by any standard. The price seems high to me, but the energy is free. Offshore wind power is more expensive than land based wind power and this project is quite a ways off shore and in fairly deep water for wind power, which explains at least part of the high price. Still at half the size of a typical power plant, this is not that big a plant.