Giant Scottish wind turbine to be blown up

A giant wind turbine in Ayrshire will be blown up in a controlled explosion.

SSE Renewables are pulling down the turbine using a controlled explosion. Picture: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

The remaining 177m-high turbine at Hunterston will be brought down by operator SSE Renewables on Thursday next week, weather permitting.

The original intention had been to dismantle the structure by crane, just like the process for removing the other turbine on the site last year.

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But a suitable method of safely dismantling the turbine by crane could not be established, SSE Renewables said.

As a result, ‘controlled felling’ has been identified by the firm as the only feasible method for decommissioning the unit.

Hunterston’s project manager Ross Cowie said: “We have successfully employed the felling technique in conjunction with Keltbray to bring turbines down at other sites in the past, so we have the knowledge and experience to fell this turbine safely.”

The National Offshore Wind Turbine Test facility at Hunterston was established in 2012.

The turbine that will be demolished is part of a test site for offshore wind farms such as the massive Beatrice field in the Outer Moray Firth.

SSE said the test site had been instrumental in securing Scotland’s place as an international leader in offshore wind energy research and development.

Once the site is cleared it will be handed back to landowner Peel Ports.

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