Floating Wind Joint Industry Project – Phase III summary report

The Phase III Summary Report summarises the research undertaken by the Floating Wind Joint Industry Project (JIP) on the technical opportunities and challenges to optimise the floating offshore wind industry as it moves towards commercial scale farms. 

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Phase 3 summary report cover

Overview

Despite Covid-19 related delays, the floating offshore wind sector is on the brink of exponential growth, with many countries turning their attention to floating wind, as it opens up new areas with high-wind resources that are not suitable for bottom-fixed installations. However, there are certain inherent challenges for the industry that need to be addressed in order to maximise the efficiency of commercial-scale floating offshore wind farms.

The report analyses the current technological gaps for three critical operations (heavy lift maintenance, tow-to-port, mooring in challenging environment) and it provides a summary of the latest competitions run by the Floating Wind JIP (Technology Acceleration and the Dynamic Export Cable) to speed up innovation. 

Publication date: July 2021

Key findings 

The report provides an in-depth analysis of the challenges and opportunities relating to three critical operations: 

  • Heavy lift maintenance: the relative motion of the turbine versus the maintenance vessel is a key risk and current heavy lift vessels, originally designed for the oil and gas industry, are not able to lift to the height of a 15MW turbine. 
  • Tow-to-port: better solutions to safely disconnect and store all the connections when bringing the turbine back to port were researched, providing recommendations depending on the turbine platform design and the distance to port.   
  • Mooring in challenging environments: both very deep and very shallow waters come with inherent challenges for anchoring floating offshore wind platforms, from selecting the most cost efficient mooring system, to mitigating the strong dynamic motions of waves experienced in shallow waters.   
Related links

Floating Wind Joint Industry Project

Phase I summary report

Phase II summary report

New industry report addresses technical challenges as floating offshore wind progresses to commercial scale

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