Siemens and Cape Wind have signed a major contract for the construction of the United States' first utility-scale offshore wind farm. Once the contract becomes effective later next year, Siemens will supply Cape Wind with its industry-leading 3.6-megawatt offshore wind turbines, an offshore Electric Service Platform (ESP) and a long-term service agreement. When fully built, Cape Wind will have a capacity of 468 megawatts. The project is situated off the Northeast coast, 20 kilometers offshore of Nantucket, at Horseshoe Shoal in the Nantucket Sound. Installation and commissioning is expected for 2016.
" Following the biggest onshore wind order ever and a follow-up order for a highly efficient and flexible gas-fired combined cycle power plant in Pennsylvania, we've now signed a contract to provide wind turbines and service for the first commercial offshore wind farm in the U.S. This shows that wind power and natural gas do not stand opposed but rather are the perfect fit for a sustainable energy system," said Michael Süß, member of the Management Board of Siemens AG and CEO of Siemens' Energy Sector.
Offshore wind in the U.S. has significant potential to supply the coastal areas of the U.S. with clean energy. Potential offshore locations are situated along the Southern and Northern Atlantic Coast and in the Gulf of Mexico. A recently published Navigant study awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy predicts that installed U.S. offshore wind power capacity will rise in the next five years to 3.5 gigawatts.