Thursday, July 18, 2024

Helena Energy Center, Texas, US


The Helena Energy Center in Ørsted is a colocated wind and photo voltaic facility with a complete capability of 518MW. Credit: RikoBest by way of Shutterstock.

The Helena wind farm with a capability of 268MW begins operations in June 2022. Credit: Ørsted/PR Newswire.

The 250MW Sparta solar energy plant begins operation in June 2024. Credit: Janusz.Stepien by way of Shutterstock.

The Helena Energy Center is a 518MW mixed wind and solar energy facility positioned in Texas, US.

The challenge is owned and developed by Ørsted, a renewable power firm. It consists of the 268MW Helena wind farm and the 250MW Sparta photo voltaic farm.

Ørsted took the ultimate funding determination and began development of the challenge in March 2021. The Helena wind farm started operations in June 2022 whereas the Sparta solar energy plant started operations in June 2024.

The Helena Energy Center can meet the electrical energy wants of greater than 110,000 properties yearly. It will contribute considerably to Texas’ power wants throughout peak demand intervals with dependable and versatile wind and solar energy.

Construction of the Helena Energy Center has created roughly 500 jobs.

Project location

The Helena Energy Center is positioned within the county of Bee County and the state of Texas, within the southeast. It covers an space of ​​roughly 25,000 hectares.

The challenge is a part of Ørsted’s intensive $20bn funding within the US to spice up home power technology and represents a virtually half a billion funding in Bee County.

Ørsted additionally developed one other challenge, the Old 300 Solar Center, in Fort Bend County, Texas. The challenge has a complete capability of 430MW and might provide electrical energy to 74,600 households yearly. It will begin operations in April 2022.

Details of the Helena wind farm

The Helena onshore wind farm, positioned in Pawnee City in Bee County, has an space of ​​15,000 acres (6,070 hectares). It is supplied with 66 Vestas V-150 4.2MW sequence wind generators.

The power produced from the challenge is offered at a aggressive price to the South ERCOT service territory throughout peak hours via the American Electric Power (AEP) transmission grid.

The annual output of electrical energy generated by the wind farm is sufficient to provide electrical energy to roughly 90,000 households.

Wind turbine specs

The Vestas V-150 4.2MW wind generators put in on the Helena wind farm have 105m excessive wind turbine generator towers. The generators have a rotor diameter of 150m and a swept space of ​​17,670m2. The rotor blades are 73.7m lengthy, whereas the nacelles are 3.4m lengthy, 12.8m excessive, and 4.2m vast.

The generators have an aerodynamic brake that features full-blade feathering with three pitch cylinders. They have two planetary phases and one helical stage gearbox and are particularly engineered for websites with low wind circumstances.

In addition, the wind generators boast an annual power manufacturing improve of as much as 21% in comparison with its predecessors such because the V-136-3.45MW mannequin.

Sparta photo voltaic middle

The Sparta solar energy plant, with 250MWAC capability, produces greater than 550,000 megawatt-hours (MWh) yearly.

Located throughout the unincorporated group of Mineral in Bee County, the photo voltaic farm is comprised of greater than 600,000 photo voltaic panels.

The photo voltaic farm makes use of monocrystalline photovoltaic bifacial panels, obtained from Tier 1 suppliers, to ensure top quality and effectivity. The panels are made with monocrystalline cells and are designed to seize daylight on their back and front sides.


In May 2024, JP Morgan, a multinational monetary firm, introduced an funding of $680m in tax fairness financing for a portfolio of photo voltaic and storage tasks in Texas and Arizona, together with the Sparta photo voltaic challenge.

Ørsted is predicted to have a portfolio of photo voltaic tasks producing as much as 2GW of energy throughout the US by the tip of 2024. The photo voltaic tasks are anticipated to contribute a complete of $125m in tax income to their life in public service in the area people.

Power buy agreements

Google, a expertise supplier, signed a 150MW energy buy settlement (PPA) with Ørsted in April 2023. Under the settlement, Google will take renewable power from the Helena wind farm for 15 years.

Johnson & Johnson, a developer of pharmaceutical and medical merchandise, signed a PPA with Ørsted in November 2021 to acquire 55MW of energy from the Sparta photo voltaic farm.

A PPA can be in place with Henkel, a chemical substances and client merchandise firm, to take energy from the Helena wind farm and with retailer Target to take energy from the Sparta photo voltaic farm.

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