Harnessing the wind

Nathan Butlin works on the UK's largest wind turbine
Nathan Butlin works on the UK's largest wind turbine

Kettering wind turbine specialist RTS has installed two 149m tall turbines, the tallest ever erected in the UK, in Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire.

Eight technicians, including Nathan Butlin, worked on the projects.

The wind turbine installation and maintenance company was awarded the £70,000 contract from the German turbine manufacturers, Vensys to install the turbines.

A spokesman for the firm said: “The team at RTS used their 25-plus years of experience to tackle this lofty project, comprising of one wind turbine built in Buckinghamshire, and the other in Central Bedfordshire.

“Both turbines will help contribute to the Government’s demand to provide clean, green energy for the general public energy requirements.

“The tall turbines were built at such a height to gain the optimum level of wind energy, but obviously created a number of issues prior and during installation.”

Boyd Brimsted, operations director at RTS, said: “Turbines of this size come with number of significant challenges; firstly there is the planning and logistics issues.

“Each element of the turbine needs to be placed in the correct order on the lorry to ensure ease of unloading on site. Weather at this time of year plays a huge part in any installation and the higher the turbine, the worse the wind speed can be for the team working at heights and increases the potential risks.

“We are used to working at heights, adopting best practices and using the right fall protection equipment.

“This project was no different we ensured risk assessments were carried out and equipment tested to ensure a safe installation.”

This project follows on from a period of growth for RTS, which has seen them also win a significant contract with Vensys to conduct regular preventative and scheduled maintenance.

The maintenance contract will see the RTS team working on wind turbines throughout the UK to ensure they are operating as effective as possible at all times.

Managing director of RTS, Chris Palmer, said: “This project was an interesting one, and I’m really pleased with how well it went, particularly as nobody else has installed turbines of this size in the UK.

“I know the team were delighted to be given the opportunity to be involved in this prestigious project.

“It is recognition of the hard work and reputation we have started to gain in the industry. We hope to develop RTS further over coming months and as we continue working with companies such as Vensys hope to increase our workforce in the near future.”