Wind Farm Installed on Ida-Viru Ash Field
9 September 2011 (ERR)
Construction of the nation's second most powerful wind farm has passed its most critical phase with the successful installation of 17 turbines on a shale ash plateau in the northeast of the country, Eesti Energia announced on September 9.
The site, which stretches along the highway between Narva and Sillamäe, was previously used as the dumping ground for waste produced by Eesti Energia's Balti Power Plant, which produces millions of tons of ash annually from burning oil shale.
Engineers had to take extra measures to secure the foundations of what they say are the only wind turbines in the world to be built on an ash field. The base of each of the towering structures was fastened to 14 pylons, which reach 40 meters down into the limestone bedrock.
When the facility is operational at the end of the year, the farm's Enercon E82 turbines will have a combined output capacity of 39 megawatts. The resulting 90 gigawatts per year they produce could be enough to power around 35,000 homes, Eesti Energia said.
The wind farm's capacity makes it one of the most powerful in the country, topped only by Eesti Energia's 48-megawatt Aulepa Wind Farm.
Wind farm projects in other areas of the country have been met with strong resistance from local residents, who complain that the turbines produce noise, disturb livestock and spoil the natural scenery.
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