LM Wind Power to open new wind turbine blade factory in Cherbourg, France

This facility will have the capability to produce the longest blade in the world, the LM 88.4 P.

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LM Wind Power (Kolding, Denmark) will open a new wind turbine blade factory dedicated to the offshore market in Cherbourg, Normandy, France. The factory will be built on a site developed by Ports Normands Associés (PNA), a port authority that includes the Normandy region and the Manche Department. Ground breaking will begin in March 2017 and production is expected to start June 2018. The company expects to employ more than 550 people.

LM Wind Power has worked together with the Normandy local authorities and in particular the Normandy Region in order for this new factory, ideally located on the port of Cherbourg, to be able to start production swiftly and serve the growing offshore wind market. This facility will have the capability to produce the longest blade in the world, the LM 88.4 P. The company expects the operation will grow to a capacity between 1.2 and 2.0 Gigawatts (GW). 

The plant will serve all customers in the global offshore wind blades market, but the decision by LM Wind Power to start construction has been greatly facilitated by the concurrent signing of a supply agreement with GE for the blades powering its Haliade offshore wind turbine. 

"This move recognizes the strategic growth of offshore wind energy in Europe and the emerging commercial opportunity for Cherbourg and the surrounding region. As a leader in wind turbine blade manufacturing, LM Wind Power has a proven track record of success in building long blades to meet the harsh and demanding challenges of marine operations. Blades of this enormous scale represent the leading edge of technology, reducing the Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) to make offshore wind competitive with onshore wind, fossil fuels and nuclear energy. The addition of this new facility will bring significant, highly skilled, long-term, sustainable 'green' jobs to the region benefitting the economy and the local community," says Alexis Crama, vice president offshore for LM Wind Power.