The Norwegian energy company Equinor and the UK-based Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult said Wednesday they had entered a collaboration deal to address some of the most pressing issues facing the offshore renewables sector.
The UK-wide partnership brings together Equinor, the operator of the 3.6 GW Dogger Bank wind farm, set to be the world’s largest offshore wind farm once completed, with the UK’s leading R&D experts in offshore wind energy at ORE Catapult.
"ORE Catapult and Equinor have a joint aim to collectively invest in technology readiness for offshore wind, and together they will focus on developing skills in the industry, on operations and maintenance initiatives, on improving turbine reliability/performance and on energy integration," ORE Catapult said.
Tony Quinn, ORE Catapult’s Technology Development Director, said: “With a long history of collaboration between ORE Catapult and Equinor, this agreement was a logical next step that we are very excited to see come to fruition. Supporting Equinor in developing solutions to key challenges for the sector, across skills, O&M and energy integration in particular, will generate exciting outcomes for the industry moving forward.”
ORE Catapult said it and Equinor are aligned on key areas such as supporting the UK Offshore Wind Sector Deal, accelerating innovation and developing opportunities in clusters across the UK. Broader collaboration in the future could include hydrogen electrolysis and battery storage, ORE Catapult said .
Trine Borum Bojsen, SVP North Sea Renewables at Equinor said: “We are delighted to strengthen our partnership with ORE Catapult, building on our relationship developed in North East England and around our floating wind project, Hywind Scotland, where we have previously collaborated to share data. We look forward to working together on initiatives across the UK that will help to develop a more competitive UK supply chain, deliver new innovations and support the talent of tomorrow entering the industry”.
According to ORE Catapukt, key components in the Dogger Bank supply chain have undergone rigorous testing and certification at ORE Catapult’s testing facility in Blyth as part of the delivery of the project.
Equinor has also been a delivery partner on ORE Catapult’s Technology Innovation and Green Growth in Offshore Renewables (TIGGOR) programme since its inception and currently supports the Catapult’s UK wide Launch Academy program.