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COst REduction and increase performance of floating WIND technology

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - COREWIND (COst REduction and increase performance of floating WIND technology)

Reporting period: 2019-09-01 to 2021-02-28

Wind Power capacity installations continue growing rapidly. It is clearly seen since in 2016, wind overtook coal as the second power generation capacity in Europe. Additionally, EU plans for energy decarbonisation set a path especially relevant and interesting for offshore wind. In this line, Floating Offshore Wind (FOW) presents a large potential which is unexploited up to now, due to a large amount of wind resource existing in deep waters (<60m).
One of the main drawbacks which is hindering floating offshore wind advent is the cost. Such technology is much more expensive than any existing other (currently, its average LCOE is above 100€/MWh); thus, a reduction of the cost is a need to ensure floating wind technology establishment.
In this regard, COREWIND looks beyond the state of the art of the floating technology with the aim of accelerating the path towards its commercial deployment by developing and validating innovative and cost-effective solutions that allows to solve the most critical barrier of floating offshore wind technology, the cost. The project will achieve at least a 15% LCOE reduction by the end of the project (i.e. 100€/MWh approximately) through disruptive technologies and procedures for floating wind sector; paving the way for achieving future cost objectives earlier (i.e. ≈ 80 €/MWh by 2040, 10 years ahead expectations ).
COREWIND project main objective is to achieve significant cost reductions and enhance performance of floating wind technology by concentrating the research and optimization efforts on two essential components, the mooring and anchoring systems and power dynamic cables. The development of key cost-effective and reliable innovative solutions are applied to two different concrete-based floating substructures designs (semi-submersible and spar) supporting very large wind turbines (15 MW). Special focus is given to develop and validate integrated solutions that significantly improve installation techniques and operation and maintenance (O&M) activities. Such innovations aim to not only reduce costs from new concepts but also through technology standardization and market uptake (i.e. the same components may be used under different floater concepts) and digitalization for both better design process and enhanced operation and maintenance.
During this early stage of the project, COREWIND has worked hard to deliver key results and advances. These include the public available 15MW wind turbine model, as well as the ACTIVEFLOAT and WINDCRETE 15MW OpenFast models. Initial developments for ensuring a proper optimization and integration among dynamic cables and mooring systems are being under development. Also, during this initial stage several public review and state-of-the-art deliverables on several technologies as Dynamic Cables, Station Keeping Systems and Operation and Maintenance has been provided. The LCOE/LCA tool to be used within the project have been upgraded into the new FOWAPP. Also, material samples for the real marine environment impact analysis has been already included.
Last but not least, two open webinars have been made and recorded (available on project webpage) presenting project advanced and objectives reaching above 400 attendees each.
COREWIND project aims to foster cost-effectiveness of floating wind by a twofold procedure, incremental innovations as well disruptive new concepts. Those include the development of upscaled concrete-based floater technologies upt to 15MW wind turbines; advanced materials and technologies for station keeping and cables, digitalization, among others.
In this regard, there are several expected impacts resulting from the development and exploitation of COREWIND technologies, tools and procedures ranging from the better economics such as lower LCOE, CAPEX and OPEX of offshore floating wind energy to improved system performance passing though benefits for economy, society and environment.
From the economic perspective it aims to ensure a cost reduction of at least 15% compared with current Bottom-Fixed Offshore Wind The project also will provide advances on numericla tools which mostly will be made available to foster research and the whole sector, including the OpenFast models of WindTurbine and floaters.
In addition, the objetive of the project is to reach society from its wide spectra from academia, industry and general public.
The final outcome of COREWIND is to ensure the advent of floating wind.
Generic image of the two floater concepts