FAQs: Cape Wind Basics

Question: How many offshore wind turbines will be part of Cape Wind?

Answer: 130.

Question: Where will Cape Wind be located?

Answer: In a shallow area of water toward the center of Nantucket Sound called Horseshoe Shoal (see map).

Question: How far apart will the wind turbines be spaced on Horseshoe Shoal?

Answer: The wind turbines will be arrayed in a grid pattern of parallel rows. Within a row, the wind turbines will be .34 nautical miles apart (about 6 football fields), the rows will be .54 nautical miles apart (about 9 football fields).

Question: Who is Cape Wind?

Answer: Cape Wind is a project being developed by Energy Management Inc. (EMI). EMI is a Massachusetts-based energy company with an over 35-year history of developing some of the cleanest energy generation projects in New England including six natural gas and one biomass projects. EMI has also been involved with developing two biomass projects in the southeast U.S. In its early years, EMI worked in the fields of energy conservation and pollution control technologies.

Question: How visible will the wind farm be from shore?

Answer: From the closest beach on Cape Cod, in clear conditions, the wind turbines will appear one half-inch above the horizon. Daytime visual simulations are available here.

Question: What is the distance of the wind farm to shore?

Answer: Cape Wind will be 5.2 miles from Point Gammon, a private island in South Yarmouth, 5.6 miles from Cotuit, 6.5 miles from Craigville Beach on Cape Cod. Cape Wind will be 9.3 miles from Oak Bluffs and 13.8 miles from the town of Nantucket. Cape Wind will be farther away from the nearest home than any other electricity generation facility in Massachusetts.

Question: How much electricity will Cape Wind provide?

Answer: Cape Wind will be rated to produce up to 468 megawatts of wind power as each wind turbine will produce up to 3.6 megawatts. Maximum expected production will be 454 megawatts. Average expected production will be 174 megawatts which is almost 75% of the 230 megawatt average electricity demand for Cape Cod and the Islands of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket.

Question: How will the wind turbines be secured to the seafloor?

Answer: Each wind turbine will be mounted to a single monopole foundation which is a hollow steel pipe that will be driven 80 feet into the sandy seabed.

Question: What is the size of the wind turbines being proposed?

Answer: The towers, from the surface of the water to the center of the blades, will be 258 feet tall. The lowest blade tip height will be 75 feet above the surface of the water and the highest blade tip height will be 440 feet above the surface of the water. The base of the wind turbine towers will be 16 feet in diameter.