This page offers visualisations of the proposed Array.
Some are by SPR, and some by NTA. No visualisation can represent what may be finally adopted/developed. All a visualisation can do is offer a representation of the scale, and impact, of the proposed Tiree Array.
(This replaces the previous Visualisation page. It incorporate further information from SPR. In Dec 2012 SPR announced that the Tiree Array project was to be put on hold, with all development work halted, but to be reviewed in Dec 2013)
NTA has recently added a Night-time Visualisations page:- The above at dusk becomes ;-
THE VISUALISATION SAGA:
Feb 2009:- Proposed Tiree ( Argyll) Array announced. No Visualisations offered.
Sept 2010: SPR public information day. Tiree advised visualisations would be presented. Not the case . ‘Misunderstanding‘ offered by SPR as the explanation.
June 2011: SPR PID . Visualisations and Montages presented. SPR advise they had been taken in “best visibility conditions”. An immediate cross check with MET Office data contradicted SPR’s statement. Met office data showed ‘best visibility conditions‘ occurred later in the day, when SPR’s visualisation consultants were still on Tiree.
June-Aug 2011 . Visualisations intermittently on view @Tiree ‘s Cattle Market then withdrawn. NTA’s website became the sole access to Array visualisations.
May 2012 : SPR, at last,published their visualisations on their website. Note SPR only offered 4 viewpoints. At the comparable consultation stage for the Atlantic Array ( Bristol Channel) the developer had produced visualisations from more than 100 viewpoints. The Atlantic Array is smaller(188- 278 turbines), and further off shore. The Atlantic Array is around 14 km from closest point on North Devon coast, 22.5km from closest point on South Wales coast, and 13km from Lundy Island. The proposed Tiree Array (215-300 turbines) is only 5 Km from shore.
Oct 2012 : SPR advise ‘considering reducing‘ the area of proposed Array by approx 30% thereby reducing the number of turbines to approx 215x6MW. SPR advised they were ‘proposing to have updated photomontages available on their project website’. This did not happen, presumably due to SPR’s decision,5 weeks later, to put the Array on hold.
Dec 2012: SPR put the project on hold. SPR use the IF word re any possible re-start.
This Oban Times video remains the most accessible visual presentation of the proposed Array. It is well worth a look, your time will be rewarded .
SPR’s website visualisations need to be scrutinised very closely to ascertain their full visual impact. Cross referencing with the Oban Times video assists.
Zone of Theoretical Visibility:,ie how many turbines can be seen from any location is a very important montage. This is presented below .
Over -arching analysis :
(1) Rarely will any one on Tiree’s public roads be out of sight of 181-240Turbines .
(2) Virtually no area of Tiree will be out of sight of any turbine
(3) Some areas, incl Upper Vaul ,will have permanent sight of ALL turbines (300).
To zoom in for the detail give some time to d/load this file.
Scale: Comparison of Skerryvore to Turbines and Offshore Convertor Station.
This is a vexatious subject and one which would appear to the ‘foundation‘ ( excuse the pun!!) for SPR putting a halt to the ARRAY ‘ with a view to (SPR) developing a technical solution that is fit for purpose in dealing with the physical characteristics of this site‘
The current appropriate foundations would be either (1) Jacket or (2) Gravity, with Jacket the current market leader.
(1) Jacket, illustrated below, require piles to be driven into the seabed. The jacket is then inserted into the piles .
Jacket Foundations require ‘ hammering’ in piles. Tiree’s geology is not conducive to ‘hammering’ piles. Explosives are not an option, and will incur considerable environmental opposition.
The seabed has to be leveled /in-filled to provide a level base. The tolerance is minimal. This may be a geological impossibility for any proposed Tiree Array.To attempt to do so would create incalculable environmental damage.
Scour protection could prove an intangible concept for the Tiree Array. Tiree fisherman’s regulary have to recover fleets of lobster creels swept several miles away from the Skerryvore Reef, after Tiree gales .
The trajectory of the market would appear to prefer the jacket foundation as Arrays go deeper with larger (6MW) turbines.
This recent (NOV2012) report of foundation issues at a Belgian Off shore Array addresses, in detail ,all the issues.
The project started with Gravity foundations and switched to Jacket foundations .
Site preparation,foundations piling, and scouring protection all combine to conclude current turbine foundation technology is not Argyll(Tiree) Array suitable.
This possibly explains why SPR has called a halt to the Tiree Array ‘with a view to developing a technical solution that is fit for purpose in dealing with the physical characteristics of this site‘.
Having ducked ‘n dived on this issue SPR, at last, ‘came out’ in Oct 2012..For the moment SPR is ‘minded‘ to put this off-shore. SPR has re-stated its intention is off- shore,but SPR is not equivocal, and retains the on-shore option.
Please refer to the Onshore Scenario Mapping page for fuller information.
These CADs are of a possible Tiree on- shore convertor station to SPR’s dimensions.
SPR indicate two units each (75mX100mX35m) on foundations 22m above sea level will be required for Tiree Array, if consented.
They will be BIG …. very BIG
These images are of a convertor half the size of the off shore convertor SPR indicate Tiree Array’s will require. If consented Tiree Array will require 2 of them!
This Siemens link has a must view VIDEO.
It is an essential view, and read, to comprehend the scale of development proposed.
Siemens describe ‘the platforms look like soccer fields suspended a good 20 meters in the air…’
The prospect of 2 structures each the size of Hampden/Murrayfield,a few miles offshore Tiree, is grotesque.
At night, lit up, they will be in defiance of SNH’s highlighting ,in Marine Scotland’s scoping opinion to SPR, “that ‘dark skies‘ are a major attribute to Tiree”
Visualisation of one of the intended Convertor stations alongside Skerryvore.
Offshore convertors for Tiree Array would be approx twice the size of this one under construction.
This video gives a further perspective
Night Time Visualisation;
SPR has refused to present any night time visualisations. SNH makes specific reference in Marine Scotland’s Scoping opinion for the Array that ‘ dark skies at night are a major attribute to Tiree ‘ .
A single turbine at night will look thus:-
NTA’s dialogue with the CAA indicates that only the perimiter turbines , approx 3 km apart, will be required to be lit. These turbines ,rotating at night will give constant flicker. Most of Tiree is in line of sight of the hub of Tilley and sees its constant night flicker.
A phalanx of constant night-light flicker can be expected from the Array’s turbines , and its convertor stations lit up like a Xmas trees.
And a visualisation not to be missed …. Downwind Micro-Climate Impact.
For those following Turbine design/options click on this link
The only 10MW at the design stage is this SWAY (Norway) unit.
Designed for 10 metres/s+ conditions, the main specifications include 164-metre rotor diameter with three rotor blade supports (eliminating the need for a rotor hub), a 13m/s rated wind speed and 12rpm nominal speed.
Note :not a single Scottish/UK designer and /or manufacturer features in any of the turbine/foundation/transmission options.
The much hyped ‘new Scottish Industrial Revolution’ is industrial colonisation.
NTA hopes these visualisations offer an over-all impression of the visual impact of the proposed Array .
NTA looks forward to your comments.
This scoping report for the Dogger Bank Array offers details and visuals, which SPR has yet to produce for the proposed Tiree Array. Allow time to upload.
Note. This page replaces the previous visualisation page, and as the web site has been redesigned, the following comments from that previous visualisation page have been collated and presented as follows:-
Offshore View says:
Shocking in the extreme, the full size images would leave any real environmentalist reaching for the phone, Industrial wind energy is a symptom of, not a solution to, our energy problems. They produce very little useful energy and are an ungodly abomination on any land or seascape. How can groups that used to gag at clearing a path for a transmission line down the east coast now accept adorning our West Coast awith hundreds of these 45-story structures? The Nature Conservancy calls it, “Energy Sprawl”. Its too awful to comprehend, a Golgotha-like parade … a shocking, endlessly repeated crucifixion scene along the skyline, with Tiree’s landscape left lying at the foot of these H.G. Wells’s monsters…If the power brokers of our nation wish to leave our children a legacy, then let it be that they have the foresight to say ‘NO’ to the blatant rape of our countryside, mountains and coastline.
lesley wilkinson says:
I am absolutely stunned. I had no idea about this. First visited beautiful Tiree in 2009 and then 2010 – went surfing. Absolutely loved the Island. This is a disgrace. We are
fighting a wind farm at Ripon, North Yorkshire and the more you learn, the more angry we become that people are having to do this. All useless and expensive and ruining the UK. Beginning to think going through the planning process just isn’t working – we need some civil unrest and to start rioting about this persistent policy of the government. I am a reasonable person but seeing your pictures of Tiree with those useless turbines makes me feel absolutely sick.
Poor as these SPR visualisations are, they give an indication of the scale of the damaging visual impact this proposed Array will have on Tiree .
SPR, despite several requests, have yet to release quality images / visualisations
of the proposed Array.
Gordon Burns says:
Like other contributers to this website, I was not aware until very recently that this monstrous proposal was being mooted; became aware of it when holidaying on Tiree end of June beginning of July 2011. I have been going to Tiree for many years and cannot believe the authorities would even entertain this proposed vandalism.
While, like many, I think that we need to be looking for alternative forms of energy, I have yet to be convinced that such widespread vandalism of our environment can in any way be construed to be ‘good for the environment’, especially the marine environment. I saw SPR’s information at An Talla on Tiree and spoke to one of SPR’s representatives who clearly had never been to Tiree before, was there for one day and who appeared to not really care or be aware about the impact of the development on Tiree and the people of Tiree directly. As far as they were concerned it was necessary for the environment. I will be writing to MSPs to object about this disgraceful project and would urge others to do the same.
VIEW FROM TILLEY.
If NTA had produced these visualisations from Tilley I would quite frankly not have believed them. The fact that SPR are prepared to share these views with us demonstrates their complete lack of respect fot this beautiful island.
If it were not obvious before it must now be beyond doubt that these obscene proposals are resisted by all who cherish the Hebrides.
Karl (Tiree) says:
If the Tiree Array gets the go-ahead in it’s current guise, not a pristine area on the west coast will be left untouched.
The Tiree Array is a test case for the whole of Britain…
We have to prevent this invasive abomination taking place if we care about our beloved home, no benefits can equate to the loss of Tiree via firstly, corporate disrespect to its populace and secondly corprate greed.
Elaine Hall says:
I cant believe that anyone would even consider doing this , it will ruin the island for its natural beauty, tourist industry, wind surfers, wild /marine life forever,how very sad. Please do everything to stop them!!
If one needed proof that there is little honesty about, when it comes to commercial vested interests working with government, look no further than the portrayal at long last by SPR, of their mantage images. To pretend that 3/500 turbines, located so close inshore as 5km would look like their representation, is dishonest to say the least. Do they take the islanders of Tiree for fools or simple minded folks, who will be swayed by smooth talking, whilst they continue their commercially driven plans and ruination of the island for generations to come. Come on SPR, be honest and come up with the real visual impact of these monsters on our landscape. 35km could not be far enough off shore, to protect this Hebridean island’s future.
Malcolm Kirk says:
Click on Wind Farm to view the video. As stated in the video this is conjecture as Planning permission has not yet gone through for the Met mast – however having read about Wind Farm owners ‘montages ‘ I decided that I would be ready in advance to show the actual true size and heights of these monsters which will overlook our village. If somebody wants to provide me with the proposed plans I would be happy to come up with something similar if it would help the cause.
It is not up to SPR to decide what is consumer friendly or not.
Having missed the info day, this is the first time I see these… really depressing I feel like an East German gazing at the iron curtain)
Cats out of the bag, but why now ?
There are so many variables in trying to put out perfect visualisations, the first thing this spanish company would do is I expect; to put a worst case image on the table ( I doubt if this is worse case as tilley looks bigger than these monstrosities from 4 km away! if this is best case it too is beyond anything on the planet), as early as possible, let people live with it and get used to it. Then reduce the number, it’s a simple sell to the niave. All in all this aesthetics debate is a very specific issue on Tiree as it run’s parallel with so many of the deeper implications (tourism, windsurfers, kite boarders etc). Don’t be drawn by the developers mind-games.
I would take these images totally at face value, horrific rape of a Scottish Islands nature. They open an inroad into the far reaching implications as to if Tiree has a future as place to live and a place to visit. How on earth can this be right it is totally out of all proportion with it’s location or need.
What hasn’t been noted is Tiree’s low sun azimuth in the winter months and the stark Silhouette and flickering these will present throughout the day or, the loss of Tiree’s ‘noted’ dark night skies.
To build this would be a crime against nature we are horrified. The person who says yes to this should face a court for criminal damage.
Moderators comment;Your reference to reduce the number hits the spot!!
Look at the sequence:-
Sept 2010 : SPR advise the Array if consented will be ‘between 300 and 500 turbines’
June 2011 : SPR advise reduced to 180-300 turbines
NTA has always been of the view that due to Tiree’s topography SPR’s has very limited potential to meet its statutory obligation to mitigate. NTA has challenged SPR on many occasions to disavow NTA of its view . A few weeks SPR replied to NTA as follows :-
‘Some mitigation has been achieved by reducing the number of turbines from 500′
This is a manifest nonsense. Any reduction is to achieve the benefits of the economy of scale and not to mitigate negative visual impact .
So why do SPR release visualisations now, when they have consistently refused to do so for 11 months? Time will tell.