The world’s first floating wind turbine is to be towed out to sea this weekend.
It had taken just over five days to tow the 1,500-tonne structure from the fabrication yard in the Finnish port of Pori on the Gulf of Bothnia where the parts were assembled. The wind turbine will be towed out to the field, south-west of Karmoy.
The test period will start in the autumn of 2009 and will last for two years. The Hywind, a 2.3 megawatt (MW) wind turbine built by Siemens, the pilot combines technology from both the Wind and Oil&Gas industry and draws upon expertise from StatoilHydro’s longstanding offshore experience.
In a similar way to how large parts of icebergs are hidden below the sea surface, the turbine has a 100 metre draft that is anchored to the seabed with cables, that can be up to 700 metres long.
The floatation element stretches 100 metres below the sea surface. It is anchored to the seabed in three places. It can be moored in waters up to 700 metres deep.
Offshore wind farms cost considerably more than wind farms on land, and initially floating ones will be more expensive than static offshore installations. Floating wind farms could later be established off both coasts of North America and off the Iberian peninsula and the coasts of Norway and the United Kingdom, she said.
Demo Video of Assembling & Installation
Floating wind farms could provide an additional source of energy for countries that have run out of space for their onshore wind farms, or where there is not enough wind on land.
Information Sources: Statoilhydro.com, Bbc.co.uk
Image Sources: Statoilhydro.com