The world’s deepest wind turbine foundation has been installed as part of Scotland’s largest offshore windfarm, off the north-east coast of the UK.

The installation was undertaken on Sunday by energy company SSE, as part of the $3.7bn Seagreen offshore wind project. In this joint venture between SSE and TotalEnergies, SSE takes responsibility for the project’s construction and TotalEnergies for its operation.

The wind farm will be made up of a total of 114 wind turbines, with this being the 112th. The final wind turbine foundation is expected to be installed by SSE later this week.

The turbine weights 2000 tonnes and was installed at a depth of 58 metres. The previous record for the deepest turbine foundation was also at the Seagreen project, installed to a depth of 57.4 metres in October 2022.

Alistair Phillips-Davies, chief executive of SSE, said of the installation: “Seagreen is an important part of SSE’s £12.5bn Net Zero Acceleration Plan, through which we’re investing £7m a day in critical low-carbon infrastructure that will help the UK achieve energy independence. By the end of the decade, we have plans to invest over £24bn in Britain alone”.

Each foundation will support a Vestas V164-10MW turbine. Once completed, the windfarm will have a total capacity of 1.1GW and be capable of generating around 5TWh. According to SSE, this is enough to power 1.6 million UK homes. The project began generating power in August 2022.

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According to John Hill, Seagreen’s Project Director, the installation is “boosting the UK’s energy security” by enabling the UK to “benefit from the strong winds available far out in the North Sea”.

Offshore wind power in the UK

On its own, SSE is one of the largest energy producers in the UK. The company holds a 40% stake Dogger Bank windfarm, located between 130km and 190km from the north-east coast of England. The wind farm is the largest offshore wind farm in the world.

The UK government has auctioned a number of Contracts for Difference to windfarm developers, which guarantee a price for power output from new developments. However, earlier this year multiple large wind farm developers called for additional tax breaks from the UK government to account for the growing costs of production.

The UK government seeks to install 50GW of offshore wind by 2030 as part of its “Powering Up Britain” strategy.