DNV KEMA releases structures standard for floating turbines

A 2 MW floating offshore wind turbine is operating approximately 5 km off the coast of Agucadoura, Portugal. (Photo: WindFloat)
A 2 MW floating offshore wind turbine is operating approximately 5 km off the coast of Agucadoura, Portugal. (Photo: WindFloat)

DNV KEMA, the energy arm of DNV, has developed a new standard for floating offshore wind turbine structures. It should help accelerate the development of a new generation of floating offshore wind turbines by establishing design requirements for the floating structure and related systems.

The standard covers a broad range of issues, including safety philosophy and design principles; site conditions, loads and response; materials and corrosion protection; structural design; design of anchor foundations; floating stability; station keeping; control and mechanical systems; transport and installation; in-service inspection and cable design.

“As demand for wind energy increases, we predict offshore deployments will continue to move into deeper waters and, consequently, there’s a need to establish design standards that will help ensure safety, reliability, and confidence in future wind turbines,” Johan Sandberg, Head of Renewable Energy at DNV KEMA, Norway, and project sponsor says. “To that end, the new standard, developed as a Joint Industry Project (JIP) with 10 participating companies, aims to spur progress in floating offshore wind through a framework for best practices and technical requirements, plus producing guidance for design, construction and in-service inspection.”

Sandberg notes that many densely populated coastal areas around the world are not suitable for traditional bottom-fixed offshore wind turbines. In other areas, the shallow water coast is already developed or challenging seabed conditions makes bottom-fixed offshore wind unsuitable. Also, local communities have been known to oppose projects due to negative visual impacts.

“Recent successful deployments of full-scale prototype configurations have demonstrated that floating wind turbines can be a viable alternative and the market is taking notice. Several companies and research institutes worldwide are already engaged in developing research programmes, pilot projects and even planning for commercial development of floating wind farms,” Sandberg says.

The 10 participants in the JIP study are Statoil, Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation, Sasebo Heavy Industries, STX Offshore & Shipbuilding, Navantia, Gamesa, Iberdrola, Alstom Wind, Glosten Associates and Principle Power.

Katharina Garus

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