New Wave Media

March 19, 2024

World’s First Floating Wind Innovation Centre Opens

Source: ORE Catapult

Source: ORE Catapult

The world’s first dedicated innovation centre for floating offshore wind has opened in Scotland.

Located in the heart of Aberdeen’s Energy Transition Zone, ORE Catapult’s £9 million National Floating Wind Innovation Centre (FLOWIC), delivered in collaboration with ETZ Limited, is designed to help supercharge the development of floating offshore wind technology in the UK, with funding from both the Scottish Government and Innovate UK.

Floating offshore wind represents a huge economic opportunity, with more than 19GW of potential projects in the pipeline through the ScotWind Leasing process, a new leasing round on the horizon in the Celtic Sea, and the prospect of transferring skills and knowledge from oil and gas to aid the Just Transition. The INTOG leasing round has also established an opportunity for floating wind to contribute to decarbonising North Sea energy production.

Through the successful roll out of this pipeline of activity, industry has estimated that floating offshore wind has the potential to deliver over £43.bn in UK gross value add (GVA) by 2050, and create more than 29,000 jobs.

FLOWIC provides unique facilities for companies to develop and derisk many of the technologies essential to the future success of the sector, with significant demand from industry for use of these services to capitalise on the unrivalled pipeline of floating offshore wind projects in UK waters.

The equipment housed in FLOWIC includes:

• A large-scale dynamic cable flex fatigue rig, designed and built specifically for use in this facility, to test and validate the strength, performance and reliability of dynamic subsea cables – a critical component of floating offshore wind farms.

• A large-scale anchor test rig to test dynamic anchoring systems – another unique element of floating wind technology.

• A floating offshore wind scale motion simulator, or Hexapod, capable of providing dynamic testing of scale structures and electrical & mooring connections in a simulated marine environment.

• A virtual reality studio to allow engineers to envisage scenarios and challenges likely to be faced in the build out of future floating wind turbines.

The February 2024 edition of Marine Technology Reporter is focused on Oceanographic topics and technologies.
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