French-based engineering and technology company Technip Energies, a Spanish renewable energy startup X1 Wind and a consortium of 10 international entities have been selected by the European Commission to accelerate the industrial-scale deployment of floating offshore wind.
Under a project called NextFloat, the consortium partners will aim to demonstrate a competitive, sustainable and integrated floating offshore wind solution optimized for deep waters. The project includes the deployment of a full-scale 6 MW prototype at the Mistral test site in the French Mediterranean Sea in order to demonstrate the concept in operational conditions.
The integrated solution relies on X1 Wind floating offshore wind technology, allowing for a lighter floater design and a reduced steel requirement, as well as a more efficient and compact mooring system, ultimately minimising the impact on the seabed, Technip Energies, which owns around 16% of X1 Wind, explained.
“By leveraging our existing collaboration with X1 Wind, we are preparing the future of the floating offshore wind market and accelerating the development of disruptive floating offshore wind solutions at industrial scale,” noted Laure Mandrou, SVP carbon-free energy solutions of Technip Energies.
The project is enabled by the participation of the Open-C foundation, which structures and operates all the test sites for marine renewable energies and offshore wind power in France. Technip Energies’ added that the integrated system design, its manufacturing, assembly and installation procedures will be tested at a scale that is relevant for the upcoming commercial offshore wind farms, that will require industrialised solutions for applications in excess of 15 MW and beyond.
In addition to Technip Energies and X1 Wind, the consortium also includes Naturgy, 2B-Energy, Hellenic Cables, Ocean Ecostructures, Schwartz Hautmont, Tersan Shipyard, Ecole Centrale de Nantes, Ocas, Hydro and the Technical University of Denmark. The grant agreement is currently under negotiations with the EC and the project is expected to start in the fourth quarter of 2022.