Periodic Reporting for period 1 - FLOW (New Floating Platform for offshore wind in deep waters.)
Reporting period: 2016-03-01 to 2016-08-31
The main advantage of FLOW lies on the design of the structure as it has been raised according to specific requisites, including meteorological and oceanographic conditions, the range of installation depths, machine type and logistics needs. On top of that the new FLOW solution has an important reduction of costs compared to other systems that will allow the reduction of the LCOE.
The design has been focused on 5MW machine, with the aim of reaching 8-10MW machines when available in the future. The already mounted prototypes have wind turbines installed in the range of 2MW, which prevents an optimization of structures. Its performance is good, but the cost per MW installed is above of what would be acceptable for the market. Larger machines unitary size is a must to reduce costs.
The FLOW project has a clear objective of optimizing the costs of the platform construction from the first stages of its development.
Objective: Analysis of the innovative value proposition that enables the sale of the product with enough profit margins to allow the return on investment and ensure the future sustainability.
Tasks: Four different tasks have been implemented during the project execution:
- Task 1: Market
- Task 2: Value proposition, business model and commercialization
- Task 3: Cost, revenues and funding scheme
- Task 4: Feasibility study
Timetable: The work done has been executed from March 1st 2015 until August 31st 2015
Depending on the offshore wind farm characteristics, the cost per installed MW ranges from 2.5 million EUR up to 4 million EUR. per MW. Wind farms closer to the coast, at lower depths using simple monopole foundations are in the lower end of the range while the ones far from the coast at larger depths using jacket foundations tend to need larger investments per MW.
Wind farm developers are pressed to offer reduced energy prices to win the tenders. This pressure in costs is moved down to the value chain affecting not only WTG manufacturers and their suppliers (rotor, nacelle, chains, tower, etc.) and but also balance of plant suppliers (foundation, substation, export cables, etc.).
As an indication of the required investment for a pilot offshore floating wind farm, the Hywind Scotland project will face and investment of 7.13 million EUR per MW installed. This number indicates that a lot of work is needed to reduce Floating Offshore Wind costs up to a commercial level.
As explained before, the new FLOW platform design is focused on reducing the LCOE that will directly imply savings in all the stages related to manufacturing, loading-out, WTG assembling, and installation.
FLOW expects to have a reduction of 30% of costs compared to other solutions (HyWind and WindFloat) a 40% of savings in load-out and transportation costs and 35% less average days to assembly the foundation and the tower in the platform.
The total average savings will make the FLOW platform the best value for money option in the market."