Siemens to supply turbines for Port of Antwerp wind farm in Belgium

Siemens will supply 15 turbines for the first phase of the largest onshore wind farm to be developed on the Port of Antwerp in Belgium.

Construction of the first phase of 40 to 50-turbine wind farm has begun on the port of Antwerp’s Scheldt river left bank area at a cost of EUR70 million (USD73.5 million).

Each wind turbine provided by Siemens will have a 3MW capacity with a 113 m rotor diameter and a shaft height of 115 m.

The farm is expected to generate enough clean power for 35,000 homes when they become operational by late October.

The project was first mooted in September 2011 when Antwerp Port Authority and the Left Bank Development Corp teamed up with the Antwerp Green Port construction consortium.

Antwerp port image from IHS Maritime 360

The turbine construction contract was finally awarded to Siemens in June 2014 and the first foundation components were delivered at the beginning of 2015.

For Siemens, installing turbines on this particular port site with a restricted area having high density of industrial activities needed much careful consideration.

Finally, the D3 turbines with compact design and low weight were used for this purpose. They are also fitted with an anti-icing system to prevent ice build-up in winter seasons.

Siting the turbines also required negotiations with the General Directorate of Air Transport and the Belgian air control authority, Belgocontrol.

Given the specific nature of the industrial port area, with many tall obstacles and a high concentration of activities, special measures had to be taken to reconcile the project with air traffic and control.

Antwerp Port Authority reinvests its share of the revenue from wind power projects investing it back into the port through the Energy Fund to facilitate energy-efficiency investments and to co-finance new energy concepts within the port area.

The Energy Fund provides financial aid, offers practical assistance to companies to carry out energy audits, draw up strategic energy plans or carry out detailed lighting studies.

Project proposals are examined by a steering group made up of representatives of the port community and experts in particular areas.

Sabeena Wahid