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| | Earth | Human World on Jan 21, 2014

View from space: World’s largest offshore wind farm

Satellite view of the London Array wind farm, 20 kilometers (12 miles) from England’s coast, where the River Thames meets the North Sea.

The London Array, the planet’s largest offshore wind farm, became fully operational on April 8, 2013. It has a maximum generating power of 630 megawatts (MW), enough to supply as many as 500,000 homes.

Image credit: NASA/USGS

Image credit: NASA/USGS

The London array is located 20 kilometers (12 miles) from England’s Kent and Essex coasts in the Thames Estuary, where the River Thames meets the North Sea,

Image credit: NASA/USGS

Image credit: NASA/USGS

NASA’s Landsat 8 satellite captured these images of the area on April 28, 2013. The top image is a closeup of the area marked by the white box in the lower image. The little white dots in the top image are the wind turbines. You can also see a few boat wakes.

To date, the London Array includes 175 wind turbines aligned to the prevailing southwest wind and spread out across 100 square kilometers (40 square miles). Each turbine stands 650 to 1,200 meters apart (2,100 to 3,900 feet) and 147 meters (482 feet) tall. Each is connected by cables buried in the seafloor, and power is transmitted to two substations offshore and to an onshore station at Cleve Hill.

Read more from NASA Earth Observatory