NewEnergyNews: Wind Floats!

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    Founding Editor Herman K. Trabish

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  • Now It’s Time For New Energy

    Thursday, December 14, 2017

    Wind Floats!

    Wind On The Waves: Floating Wind Power Is Becoming A Reality

    December 11, 2017 (Department of Energy)

    “Worldwide, 13,000 megawatts of offshore wind has been deployed —yet the U.S. only has…[the 30 MW Block Island Wind Farm] off the coast of Rhode Island…[S]everal U.S. specific technical challenges will need to be overcome…[One] is the depth of the waters along many coastal areas. While most European installations to date have occurred in shallow waters, most (roughly 60%) of our nation’s offshore wind resources are situated in deep waters — more than 60 meters down (or nearly 200 feet). This means traditional bottom-mounted foundations aren’t economically viable…[For the oceans off the West Coast, Hawaii, and Maine,]researchers and engineers are finding ways to create platforms that float, while giving the top-heavy turbine enough stability to operate effectively. Tethered to the sea floor, floating foundations allow wind turbines to operate in areas where water depths may be greater than 165 feet…This technology, largely adapted from the oil and gas industry, is already successful at the prototype stage, with more extensive test and demonstration projects underway…Even so, the dynamic nature of wind turbines, along with the weight distribution needed to stay afloat, presents a number of engineering issues to overcome…[but, with more innovation, floating technologies] may have the potential to become more cost-effective than traditional bottom-mounted foundations in the long term…” click here for more

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