LONDON 21/03/11Whilst offshore wind is booming in many countries, offshore wind farms require additional capital investment due to more expensive marine foundations, integration in to the electrical network, and installation procedures in addition to limited access for O&M during operation.The new Offshore Wind Installations and Constructions Report published by Wind Energy Update has found that offshore wind farms being built further away from the shore, using larger and much heavier turbines has paved the way for new innovation in offshore wind.
Among the report’s findings are:
•Monopile foundations are being pushed to its structural limits in the Greater Gabbard project
•Experts interviewed for the report said that there are only 15 vessels available for the installation of cables in offshore wind farms, learn how the industry is coping with the shortage
•Offshore cabling generates 70% of insurance claims, even though it represents only 7% of the capital costs
•The cost of large scale offshore wind farms, currently at around £ 3m per MW, must come down by at least 15% to ensure the economic viability of offshore wind
“Understanding the most efficient ways to operate offshore wind farms is vital. Offshore wind farms require additional capital investment due to more expensive marine foundations, integration in to the electrical network, and installation procedures in addition to limited access for O&M during operation” said Alan Tricklebank, a wind industry expert and author of the report.
The new report, “The Offshore Wind Construction and Installation Report” published by Wind Energy Update, examines the best practice for marine foundations, installation vessels and cabling in offshore wind farms using case study analysis with innovative offshore wind farm developers; Greater Gabbard, Bard, Ormonde and Thornton Bank.
The report will be available to purchase from March 28 2011. Selected findings are available to download now at:http://www.windenergyupdate.com/offshorereport/preview.shtml
Increasing use of specialist installation vessels is changing offshore wind farm construction. Despite progress, there still needs to be a far better “techno-economic” solution to ensure the sustainability of the sector, say industry experts.
We look at how the offshore wind sector is taking vital steps in working out relatively shorter construction periods. Toby Edmonds, project director for the Gwynt y Môr Offshore Wind Farm in Liverpool Bay, chats with us about the project and the lessons learned along the way.
Offshore wind specialists are collectively making steady progress and diligently trying to understand the health and safety issues associated with managing the risk of deep water. Wind Energy Update investigates.