Financial close at Lincoln Gap first phase

AUSTRALIA: Singaporean independent power producer Nexif Energy has achieved financial close on the 126MW first phase of a 59-turbine wind farm in South Australia, the company announced.

The first prototype installation of Senvion's 3.6M140 was completed in Husum, northern Germany, in September

The 212MW Lincoln Gap project, also includes a 10MW battery system, and will feed into South Australia’s electricity grid via the ElectraNet transmission network.

Snowy Hydro, which owns a 4.1GW hydro project in the Snowy Mountains in New South Wales, and business-only electricity provider ERM Power, have signed power purchase agreements (PPAs) for the first 126MW phase, Nexif Energy stated.

Australia's state-owned green bank, Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), will lend up to A$150 million ($115 million) for construction of the first stage of the wind farm, while South African asset manager Investec has provided A$39 million ($30 million) for working capital and letters of credit, Nexif stated.

The investment in Lincoln Gap marks Nexif Energy’s largest financial commitment since it was formed in 2015 by independent power management company Nexif and global private equity firm Denham Capital, the company said.

German manufacturer Senvion will install the first 35 turbines of the 212MW Lincoln Gap site. Senvion was named preferred supplier for Nexif's Lincoln Gap and 90MW Glen Innes projects exactly one year ago

Its 3.6M140 low- to medium-speed turbine will be the first from Senvion’s 3MW class to be installed in Australia, the manufacturer stated.

The rotor blades will be made with RodPack technology, which uses aligned fibre reinforcement as a substitute for glass fabrics as the main girder in the blades, allowing for a lighter design.

The first prototype installation of the 3.6M140 EBC was completed at a test field in Husum, northern Germany, in September.

Lincoln Gap will be built under a turnkey contract, Nexif Energy stated, and is expected to be commissioned in the third quarter of 2018, according to Senvion.

Work on financing the project’s second phase is "already well-advanced", Senvion stated.