GE-owned turbine blade builder LM Wind has launched a recruitment drive and a training programme for the workers it will need to manufacture blades for offshore wind turbines. The company needs to recruit 100 managers, technicians and operators by the end of 2018.
The company plans to use a Centre of Excellence at its facility in Cherbourg to build blades for turbines for upcoming projects in France and elsewhere.
The plant will serve customers in the growing European offshore wind turbine market and will be able to produce the world's longest blade, a 107 m unit for the forthcoming Haliade-X 12MW. The factory is to be extended to produce the blades for the new turbine.
LM Wind will put new recruits through a four-to-six week theoretical and practical programme on blade manufacturing at facilities in France and in factories in Spain and Poland.
LM Wind Power chief executive Duncan Berry said the Cherbourg plant would become a source of employment in the region. In due course, when in full production, the site will employ around 550 people and could create up to 2,000 indirect jobs in the region. The company said 10 employees had already started work at the factory.