The UHL Felicity arrived this week in New Bedford, carrying tower sections made in Portugal for use in the Vineyard Wind project that is going up south of Martha’s Vineyard starting this summer.
This represents the first shipment of offshore wind turbine components in Massachusetts, for the state’s first offshore wind project. Vineyard Wind, a joint venture of Avangrid and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, is expected to start generating electricity by the end of the year. When complete, potentially some time in 2024, the offshore wind farm will generate up to 800 megawatts, or enough power for more than 400,000 homes.
About 100 people will be working in New Bedford this summer, assembling the wind turbines, which will then be barged out to the wind farm site.
Vineyard Wind will consist of 62 turbines — each as roughly tall as the John Hancock Tower, with blades the length of a football field — made by General Electric, known as the Haliade-X. Construction has already begun on two transmission cables that will link Vineyard Wind with the mainland grid; the power will come ashore in the town of Barnstable. The nearly $3 billion Vineyard Wind project is being financed through contracts with the state’s three main electric utilities.
Jon Chesto can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @jonchesto.