Wind Farms in Northern Ireland

Wind Farms are dedicated areas of land that are set aside to accommodate several large scale wind turbines to harness the power of the prevailing wind. Wind Farms can have hundreds of turbines running at once. Whereas a local domestic wind turbine will typically be used to service local energy requirements, a wind farm will typically supply all of its output directly into the national grid.

There several windfarms located across Northern Ireland, with a particular concentration in the Co Tyrone area:

Bessy Bell wind farm is located in Newtownstewart, Co Tyrone. It is owned by PowerGen Renewables and operated by B9 Energy. The wind farm has 10 Vestas 500kW turbines generating a total of 5Mw of power. Bessey Bell was one of the first commercial wind farms in Northern Ireland, operating successfully since 1995.

Corkey Wind Farm is located in Clogh Mills, Co Antrim. It is owned and operated by Scottish Power. There are currently 10 Nordtank NTK500 turbines installed on the farm, generating a total of 5Mw of power.

Elliots Hill is similar in size to Bessey Bell – 10 Vestas v39/500 turbines generate 5Mw of power in this windfarm owned and operated by Scottish Power.

Owenreagh is currently one of Northern Irelands largest windfarms. It operates 2 different types of machines – with 10 Zond Z-40s and 6 Vestas V52/850 turbines generating a combined power of 10.1Mw. The farm is owned and operated by South Western Services.

Rigged Hill is another 5Mw wind farm, located in Derry and operated by Scottish Power. There are 10 Nordtank NTK500/37 turbines installed on Rigged Hill.

Tappaghan Mountain is one of the largest operating wind farms in Northern Ireland. It was established in 2005 and features 19 GE turbines over two sites producing a total of 28Mw of power. It is owned by Airtricity and is part operated by GE Wind Energy and Scottish and Southern Energy PLC.

Slieve Divena Wind Farm operates 12 Nordex N80 turbines generating a total of 30Mws of power, making it one of Northern Ireland’s largest wind farms to date. It was created in 2009 and is owned and operated by Airtricity.

Altahullion Wind Farm operates 20 Bonus B62 turbines along with 9 Siemens SWT turbines. It generates a massive 37.7 Mw of power, enough to supply the electricity needs of approximately 12,000 homes. Altahullion wind farm is one of the most well known in Northern Ireland as it is very clearly visible on the main A6 road as you head up towards the Glenshane Pass. Public access to the windfarm is available from the A6 leading to the first turbine on the site.

There are several other wind farms dotted around Northern Ireland, with new ones being added all the time. The government is committed to reducing its dependence on fossil fuels and so incentives are in place to make the operation of a wind farm as attractive as possible from a financial investment point of view.