MHI Vestas Offshore Wind (Aarhus, Denmark) reported on Feb. 5 that it has begun recruitment of more than 200 skilled employees at the recently announced blade manufacturing facility on the Isle of Wight, off the southern coast of the UK. The new positions have been created to fulfill the demand for DONG Energy’s 258 MW Burbo Bank Extension project, off the coast of Liverpool Bay in the UK, as well as potential future offshore projects.
“We are extremely pleased to be able to announce the commencement of hiring over 200 full time jobs at our manufacturing facility on the Isle of Wight," says CEO Jens Tommerup. "These new jobs are skilled and form a critical aspect of our manufacturing capability. When serial production begins in May, MHI Vestas Offshore Wind will be the only manufacturer producing blades for offshore wind projects in the UK.”
“The 80m blades for the V164-8.0 MW prototype were designed, manufactured and tested at the Isle of Wight facility. We have developed the unique competences and processes necessary to manufacture blades at the centre which makes it an ideal location to ramp up to serial manufacturing.”
UK Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Davey says, "We are backing offshore wind because renewable electricity is crucial to improving our energy security, as well as stimulating economic growth and reducing emissions. Our long-term economic plan to build a more resilient economy has made the UK the world's number one market for offshore wind, attracting investors from all over the world and creating green jobs. Today's commitment from MHI Vestas of 200 new green jobs will lead to blades being mass produced in the UK, bolstering the UK’s expertise in advanced manufacturing.”
MHI Vestas Offshore Wind will lease the production hall at Vestas’ blades technology center on the Isle of Wight. Serial production of blades will commence in May 2015.
The Vestas R&D facility on the Isle of Wight was opened in 2011 and was specifically designed to develop large blades for the latest wind turbines. The facility consists of two halls 170m long and 50m wide, one for testing and verification, and one for blade production, which will be leased by MHI Vestas Offshore Wind.
Vestas will continue to conduct research and development of blade technology on the Isle of Wight, including the testing and verification of the V164-8.0 MW, which is being finalised by Vestas on behalf of MHI Vestas Offshore Wind.