RWE Renewables (RWE) recently partnered with Spanish engineering firm Saitec Offshore Technologies (Saitec) to develop a floating platform for offshore wind turbines.
In a joint pilot project called “DemoSATH”, the RWE and Saitec will start testing a floating platform for wind turbines off the Basque Coast in 2021.
This deal places the companies in a strong positipn, as the potential for floating wind power is around 7,000 gigawatts (GW) for Europe, the US and Japan, according to GlobalData.
A report from the data and analytics company said that offshore wind is expected to play a key role in achieving the EU’s climate and renewable energy targets but design limitations have resulted in foundation-based offshore wind farms being built in relnoteatively shallow waters.
Mukka Soumya Gupta, Power Analyst at Global Data, said: “Approximately 40MW of floating wind capacity is currently active in Europe. Floating platforms allow for the deployment of wind turbines almost anywhere in the sea, maximizing the exploitation of offshore wind energy potential. Moreover, they have shorter development cycles and are more environmentally friendly.
“The objective of RWE Renewables and Saitec’s pilot project is to outline viable solutions for the widespread commercialization of floating wind farms. Data pertaining to the construction, operation and maintenance of the unit could provide beneficial insights to engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) entities and investors, amongst others, who are vital for transforming this technology into a dependable and economically viable mode of power generation.”