Dong Energy has commenced installation of the first of the 32 world's largest wind turbines planned at the 258MW Burbo Bank Extension offshore wind farm off the coast of Liverpool, UK.

The wind farm will feature 32 MHI Vestas Offshore Wind V164-8.0MW wind turbines with 8MW capacity each.

It will be the first offshore project to utilize the world’s most powerful wind turbine, the company said.

Claus Bøjle Møller, project director, said: "By using bigger turbines we are able to bring down the cost of providing clean, renewable energy to homes around the UK.

"This positive milestone is a significant achievement for the project and we look forward to producing more green energy here in Liverpool Bay."

Upon commissioning scheduled in 2017, the project will generate electricity required power over 230,000 UK homes annually.

MHI Vestas CEO Jens Tommerup said: “The introduction of the V164-8.0 MW will support the industry’s ambitions to drive down the cost of energy through reduced installation time, electrical infrastructure, foundations, and service visits compared to power plants using less powerful turbines.”

MHI Vestas will manufacture the blades for the V164-8.0MW turbines at its blade factory on the Isle of Wight and then assemble them at its pre-assembly facility in Belfast.

The project, which is an extension to the existing and operational Burbo Bank offshore wind farm, is the first of three projects for which the company secured final investment decision enabling contracts (Contract for Difference) in April 2014 by the UK government.

DONG Energy owns 50% stake in the project while Danish pension provider PKA and Lego Group's parent firm Kirkbi hold 25% stakes each.

Image: The first V164-8.0MW turbine being installed at Burbo Bank Extension wind farm off Liverpool, UK. Photo: courtesy of MHI Vestas Offshore Wind A/S.