Offshore Wind Energy

Sept. 23, 2019

World’s first floating wind farm project moves forward   

Equinor reports that Enova has approved an application for funding of up to NOK2.3 billion ($256 million) to support the Hywind Tampen project in the Norwegian North Sea. This would be the world’s first floating offshore wind farm supplying renewable power to offshore oil and gas installations.

Equinor and its partners are considering the possibility of supplying electricity from a floating offshore wind farm to the Gullfaks and Snorre fields.

“With this support we have taken an important step forward in realizing the project. Now it is up to the licensees to further mature the project towards a final investment decision this autumn,” said Pål Eitrheim, executive vice president for New Energy Solutions in Equinor.

Earlier the Business Sector’s NOx Fund decided to support the Hywind Tampen project by an investment grant of up to NOK566 million ($63 million).

“The Hywind Tampen project will contribute to further developing floating offshore wind technology and reducing the costs of future floating offshore wind farms, offering new industrial opportunities for Norway, the licences and Norwegian supplier industry in a growing global offshore wind market,” said Olav-Bernt Haga, project director for Hywind Tampen.

Hywind Tampen may be the first project in the world for supplying electricity generated by floating offshore wind turbines to oil and gas platforms. The project will ensure profitable oil and gas production from the Snorre and Gullfaks fields with low CO₂ emissions. The project may reduce CO₂ emissions by more than 200,000 tonnes per year, equivalent to emissions from 100,000 private cars.

The Hywind Tampen offshore wind farm will consist of 11 wind turbines with a total capacity of 88 MW. The wind farm will be able to meet around 35% of the annual demand for electricity of the five platforms: Snorre A and B and Gullfaks A, B, and C. In periods of strong wind, the percentage will be much higher.

Green Storm to work at Dudgeon offshore wind farm 

Equinor has awarded Green Marine a three-year contract to deliver operations and maintenance work for the Dudgeon offshore wind farm in the southern North Sea.

Green Marine will supply its Damen-built 2610 Twin Axe vessel, Green Storm, to assist in the operations and maintenance of the wind farm alongside support from the company’s onshore team.

The Green Storm is a dedicated vessel for the offshore wind industry. It transports personnel and cargo to offshore installations.

Simon Underwood, Equinor’s marine & logistics leader for the Dudgeon project, said: “The Green Storm is an excellent vessel that will allow us to continue safe and expeditious operations offshore at the Dudgeon wind farm.

“The Green Storm provides the technicians with a comfortable and efficient transfer platform that enhances efficient productivity whilst maintaining the highest level of safety. She is a welcome addition to our fleet and will work in tandem with our service operations vessel.”

The Dudgeon offshore wind farm is located off the coast of Cromer in North Norfolk. Since its completion in late 2017, the 402-MW offshore wind farm has been producing enough energy to power more than 410,000 UK homes from its 67 6-MW wind turbine generators.

HMC wins second wind contract offshore Taiwan

Ørsted has contracted Heerema Marine Contractors to transport and install 111 turbine foundations and two substations for the 900-MW Greater Changhua 1 and 2a offshore wind farms in Taiwan.

The company will also be responsible for onshore marshalling services as well as the seabed preparations and scour protection.

The heavy-lift vessel Aegir will carry out the installation in water depths of 30-35 m (98-115 ft) during 2021 and 2022.

The Greater Changhua offshore wind projects consist of four sites in the Taiwan Strait, from 35-60 km (22-37 mi) off the coast of Changhua County.

Ørsted has obtained site exclusivity on four offshore wind sites with a planned total generation capacity of 2.4 GW. In 2018, the company was awarded capacity for two projects of 900 MW and 920 MW. •