Equinor and BP on Thursday announced the launch of a New York-based Offshore Wind Innovation Hub that they say will facilitate partnerships with start-ups that bring new technological solutions to the growing US offshore wind industry
"The initiative springs from a new three-year partnership between Equinor, the Urban Future Lab (UFL) at the NY Tandon School of Engineering, and the National Offshore Wind R&D Consortium (NOWRDC), supported by New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC)," the press statement issued Thursday, reads.
"The new Innovation Hub will leverage the success of the Urban Future Lab in promoting and helping the launch of cleantech start-ups, fostering collaboration with the international incubator community to cultivate pilots and demonstration projects that accelerate advances in offshore wind," the partners said.
According to the statement, the Innovation Hub will create a physical location for offshore wind programming and serve as a center for the industry’s innovation ecosystem. The Hub will host educational programming, workshops, and curricula for the startups, as well as networking opportunities with industry participants. It will be located adjacent to Equinor and BP’s new project office in Sunset Park.
Equinor is leading the initiative on behalf of its 50-50 strategic partnership with BP. The two companies are together developing the Beacon Wind and Empire Wind offshore wind projects in the U.S. The two offshore wind projects which will supply 3.3 gigawatts (GWs) of electricity to New York—enough to power nearly two million households.
“The benefits of this program to the citizens of NYS are twofold. Not only will the Equinor/BP projects bring us clean, renewable energy, but the Innovation Hub will be an important step in building a new wind industry based in NY. The nascent technologies that are necessary for successful deployment will find a receptive home and business development services at the Hub,” said Pat Sapinsley, Managing Director, Cleantech Initiatives, NYU Urban Future Lab.
In the coming months, the partners said they would develop a call for applications to identify and select industry-leading startups whose technologies address key challenges facing US offshore wind.
"Once chosen, these startups will receive tailored support and unique programming that draws on UFL’s network of mentors, NOWRDC industry community, and key policy figures in the technology areas identified for the cohort – laying the groundwork for potential partnerships between Equinor and the participating startups," Equinor said.