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The wind force is much stronger, more stable and constant in the ocean than on land. There are no obstacles in the sea, and its relief compared to the land surface is much lower, so the wind speed is higher and thus also the production of electricity (around 20% greater than on land).
But not any location is suitable for the installation of fixed-base wind turbines, anchored to the seabed. There are limiting factors such as the continental slope, the distance to the coast, the depth, and the complexity of the seabed. In this sense, floating offshore technology can reduce these limitations, allowing wind farms to be installed further away from the coast and with larger and more powerful turbines, making it possible to take advantage of the intensity of offshore winds and the greater offshore wind potential. It consists of floating structures specially designed to maintain stability and which have anchoring systems that connect the platforms to the seabed.
This is still a new technology for wind turbines, and there are so far only a few installations in service worldwide ( totaling around 65 MW). To deploy this technology in Spain, Saitec Offshore Technologies has launched the DemoSATH project in collaboration with RWE Renewables. It consists of the installation of a 2 MW offshore wind turbine 2 nautical miles off the Basque coast, with the aim of innovating and reducing offshore wind energy generation costs.
The wind turbine will be installed on a concrete floating platform in an 85-metre deep sea location in front of the port of Armintza, in the BiMEP test area. The energy generated will be transferred to land via underwater electrical infrastructures to be injected into the electrical distribution network. It is the first full-scale prototype of a grid-connected infrastructure of this type in Spain.
Ormazabal has contributed to the DemoSATH project by supplying equipment that is resistant and adapted to marine environments, incorporating high added value solutions that will provide the floating wind turbine with operational safety, protection, digitalisation and logic. Innovation as Ormazabal’s driving factor allows us to work on the continuous development of solutions specifically prepared for the wind energy sector, a key sector in the process of transition towards climate neutrality.
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