GE Renewable Energy says the first of 66 nacelles for the offshore turbines for the Merkur offshore windfarm has left its assembly line. The company also recently won a deal in China for three Haliade turbines.

The nacelle will be stored at GE’s Saint-Nazaire site while new ones continue to be manufactured, and then shipped to the company’s logistics hub in Eemshaven in the Netherlands, from which the installation process will start in spring 2018.

“Merkur is a very important project and a strategic windfarm for us because it allows us to continue our export ramp-up activity in Saint-Nazaire while we keep on moving into new strategic projects. Just last week we announced our first China offshore deal that will make GE the only supplier to have installed offshore wind turbines in the Americas, Europe and Asia”, said John Lavelle, chief executive of GE’s offshore wind business.

The Merkur windfarm is approximately 35km north of the island of Borkum, Germany, in the North Sea, and will consist of 66 turbines that will generate approximately 1,750 GWh annually. When completed at the end of 2018 Merkur will be one of Germany’s largest offshore windfarms.

GE announced at the end of March 2017 that it had been selected by Fuqing Haixia Electricity Generation Company (a joint venture between China Three Gorges and Fujian Energy) to deliver three Haliade150-6MW offshore wind turbines to the Fujian Xinghua Gulf demonstration project. The contract includes technical support and a two-year operation and maintenance service. GE is one of the several wind turbine suppliers to participate in the 73MW windfarm project.

The three nacelles and generators for the Chinese project will be manufactured at GE’s facility in Saint-Nazaire; the towers and blades will be manufactured locally in Chengxi, China and in Denmark, respectively. Installation in China is expected to take place during the last quarter of 2017.