Roscoe wind farm in Texas, US, is one of the world’s biggest onshore wind farms, with an installed capacity of 781.5MW.
The Roscoe wind farm complex comprises four operational wind farms, namely Roscoe, Champion, Pyron and Inadale.
Constructed by Germany-based energy company E.ON Climate and Renewables (EC&R), the plant is located on 100,000 acres of land, which is primarily used for cotton farming and stretches into the counties of Mitchell, Nolan, Fisher and Scurry. The site was leased from dryland cotton farmers.
Construction of the wind farm complex began in May 2007. The wind farm has been fully operational since October 2009.
E.ON transferred its EC&R business to RWE, a multi-national energy company, in October 2019, providing the latter with the ownership of multiple renewable energy assets, including the Roscoe wind farm complex.
The project avoids 1.4 million tons (Mt) of carbon dioxide (CO₂) emissions a year compared to fossil fuel power generation, which is the equivalent of removing about 250,000 cars from the road.
The Roscoe wind farm complex is located near Roscoe city in West Texas. It is located 45 miles (72km) south-west of Abilene, 230 miles (370km) from Dallas, and 420 miles (676km) from the nearest seaport, which is located in Houston.
The location of the project offers favourable conditions, with average winds of 18 miles an hour (29km/h) throughout the year. There are five major transmission lines running across the project site. The availability of vast tracts of farmlands in the region also helped in the development of the project.
Roscoe wind farm construction
The Roscoe wind farm project was built by EC&R in four phases. Of its total installed capacity of 781.5MW, approximately 209MW and 126.5MW are generated by the phase I and phase II units, respectively. Together, phase III and phase IV generate 446MW.
The Roscoe wind complex opened in February 2008, following the commissioning of phase I. Phases II and III went live in March 2008 and March 2009, respectively. The operations of the first two phases began in September 2008.
Phase IV was completed in October 2009. It was opened for operations, together with phase III, the same month.
Roscoe wind farm complex details
The wind farm complex employs 627 wind turbines, which are positioned 900ft apart and range in height from 350ft to 415ft.
The Roscoe wind farm was developed in phase I and is powered by 209 Mitsubishi 1MW turbines.
The Champion wind farm, which was developed in phase II, is powered by 55 Siemens 2.3MW turbines.
Developed in phase III, the Pyron wind farm features 166 GE 1.5MW turbines, which produce 249MW of clean energy.
Finally, the Inadale wind farm was developed in phase IV and is equipped with 197 Mitsubishi 1MW wind turbines.
Power distribution from Roscoe wind farm
The power generated by the wind farm under phase I was supplied to TXU Wholesale, a subsidiary of TXU Corporation, under a five-year sales contract. The power generated by the wind farm’s first two phases was distributed to 100,000 homes, while the entire complex is capable of supplying power to 234,000 homes.
Roscoe wind farm financing
The first phase of the project involved an investment of $300m. Approximately $1.5bn was invested in all four phases in total.
GE Energy Financial Services invested 50% of the structured equity for the 209MW first phase. The other 50% of the structured equity was supplied by a subsidiary of Wachovia, which is now part of Wells Fargo. EC&R also contributed equity to the project. The Roscoe wind farm was the second project that was carried out jointly by EC&R and GE Energy Financial Services in West Texas.
RRC Power & Energy, an engineering company based in the US, was appointed to provide geotechnical engineering, structural engineering and construction materials testing for the project.