Scottish offshore energy company Equinor has revealed its preferred floating wind foundation design for full-scale gigawatt (GW) commercial floating offshore wind, if successful in the ScotWind leasing round. The Wind Semi, a semi-submersible wind turbine foundation, was created with flexibility in mind, allowing fabrication and assembly to be performed using local resources. The Wind Semi has various features that make it particularly suited for rough conditions, as well as solutions that can help the Scottish supply chain maximise its potential.
As per a company statement, at 1 GW, this project would be over 30 times bigger than Hywind Scotland, the UK’s and Equinor’s first floating project. Further, it will create opportunities for both existing suppliers and new entrants to the offshore wind sector. Equinor has established a set of design principles and solutions that can be used to any floating concept to ensure that the technology is cost-effective.
Equinor installed its first floating offshore wind turbine in 2009, and it now owns and runs Hywind Scotland (30 MW). The company currently powers around 750,000 UK homes through its three offshore wind farms Sheringham Shoal (317MW), Dudgeon (402MW) and Hywind Scotland (30MW). Further, the company is also a partner in reportedly the world’s biggest offshore wind farm, Dogger Bank, which is currently under construction and will have 3.6 GW of capacity on completion.
REGlobal’s Views: Scotland has become an attractive investment hotspot for large players like Equinor with its massive potential for developing offshore wind farms and its recent ScotWind offshore seabed leasing round.