The future of wind turbines seem to be the offshore wind turbines. Offshore wind turbines take better advantage of wind resources, there is greater space in the sea than on earth, and thus, bigger wind turbines can be installed.
In this sense, expert engineers and investigators are working on several projects:
- First prototype in the Canary Islands, Spain
This project is being carried out in the Pardo Hydrodynamics Experimental Channel (CEHIPAR) in Madrid (Spain).
Another offshore wind turbine in Spain is expected to be operating in the second half of 2013. It will have a floating foundation: it consists of a platform 3 columns or legs that will be half-submerged, as shown on the above photo. The legs are about 20 meters in height, and have a diameter of about 4 metres at the base and 3 meters at the top. It will be located at the Cantabrian Sea, between 1.6 and 2.7 kilometres from the coast and will produce a power of 1,5MW. It will be sited 100 metres above the seabed, Spain.
The aim is to test offshore wind turbines in deep waters. They will be located along the coastline of Catalonia.
The research will be executed in two phases:
- The first phase will consist of the installation of 4 wind turbines anchored to the seabed at a distance of 3.5 kilometres from the coast and water depth of 40m, which will produce a total power output of 20 MW;
- The second phase will involve eight floating wind turbines installed around 30 kilometres from the coast and water depth of 100m, and will provide 50MW.
Spain will start investing in the offshore wind turbines, depending on the results and profitability of the aforementioned projects. Are there offshore wind turbines in your country?
Credits: Image and data linked to sources.