Whitelee Wind Farm Key Facts
Whitelee Wind Farm is situated on Eaglesham Moor, near Glasgow, Scotland. ScottishPower Renewables first identified the site in 1999, although it took another seven years for work to actually commence on the wind farm, with the first wind turbine erected on 14th November 2007. It is now the largest onshore wind farm in the UK (and in Europe) with 140 turbines producing a combined 322MW of energy, which is enough electricity to power 180,000 homes.
Whitelee Wind Farm Operations
Following the successful rollout of this 1st phase of development, ScottishPower Renewables got planning permission from the Scottish Government to extend the wind farm by building another 75 turbines; which are due to be completed later in 2012. These extra turbines are set to produce an additional 217 MW of electricity taking the total installed capacity to a potential 539 MW; enough to power an estimated 304,000 homes.
The 140 turbines currently in operation are produced by Siemens and have a rotor diameter of 101m, which are designed to spin and therefore create electricity when wind speed is in excess of 4m/s, however maximum electrical output will be when the wind speed is in excess of 13m/s. If the wind goes above 25m/s, the turbines will cease operation for safety reasons.
In April 2012, ScottishPower Renewables decided to seek planning permission for a further small extension of five additional turbines; permission for this is still yet to be decided.
Whitelee Wind Farm Funding
The Whitelee Windfarm is being developed and operated by ScottishPower Renewables (SPR), which is part of Iberdrola Renewables, the largest renewable energy company in the world.