ENERCON and WindVision open E-126 wind farm in Estinnes

18.06. 2011

Last Saturday (18 June), ENERCON and the farm owners, WindVision, celebrated the official opening of the Estinnes Wind Farm in Wallonia, Belgium. Eleven ENERCON E-126 wind turbines with a rated power of 6 and 7.5 MW are estimated to produce a total annual power output of 187 GWh supplying approx. 50,000 homes with environmentally-friendly electricity. This is the first project of its kind worldwide.

“With the Estinnes Wind Farm, ENERCON will be able to demonstrate to the world that the E-126 (currently the world’s most powerful wind turbine) is not only ideal for nearshore regions but also ideal for lucrative high yield sites inland," says Bernard Fink, ENERCON’s Sales Manager for Belgium. The Estinnes site is situated near Mons on a 3 by 3 kilometre plateau with excellent wind potential.

In terms of energy politics, the opening of the wind farm is a momentous event, according to Fink. The nuclear catastrophe in Japan has relaunched the discussion of a changeover to readily available reliable alternative
energy sources. Wind power is one excellent option. But in order to make the transition and rapidly start replacing nuclear power plants by wind turbines, it is essential that more sites be developed inland. For this type of location, ENERCON’s E-126/7.5 MW and the new E-101/3 MW turbine both equipped with state-of-the-art features and the tried and tested gearless technology present the ideal solution.

Construction at the wind farm in Estinnes - the world’s first E-126 project of this size - began in 2008. Fink highly appreciated the close collaboration with the customer, WindVision, with whom ENERCON developed
a special new logistics concept to install the mega turbines including deploying the latest and world’s largest mobile crane. The E-126 turbines were connected to the grid by means of ENERCON’s most recent power feed technology providing the turbines with power plant properties. In addition, ENERCON supplied Belgium with its first transmission substation for wind turbines.

After an approx. three year construction period, the last turbine was connected to the grid at the end of September 2010. This momentous event was celebrated directly on site together with ENERCON, WindVision, 150 invited guests (politicians and businesspeople), as well as a great turnout of visitors from the surrounding region.

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Press release - Inauguration of the E-126 wind farm in Estinnes (8,35 MB)