Equinor, a Global Energy producing company, first brought the idea of floating turbines in the year2021 to power gas platforms and offshore oil in Norwegian waters. The project was supposed to run on diesel, which turned out to be an expensive affair and harmful to the environment. Many believe that these wind turbines floating miles present out in the sea would eventually provide electricity to domestic households. The system was seen as something that would provide clean energy at a cheap rate; however, it was quickly surmised that it might just be able to feed into the National Grid if it was done on a utility-scale.
Recently, United Kingdom declared that it would ensure power in UK homes through fixed offshore wind farms by 2030, while Wales is ambitious that it would be self-sustainable through renewable by that year. Currently, Wales meets 50% of energy needs from renewable sources like wind and solar.
UK has proposed a 96 megawatt (MW) wind farm that would power about 90,000 homes and be built on 28 miles sea area by 2027. These recent world developments may boost the Floating Turbines Market as governments worldwide have started to invest in similar projects.
In another instance, Scotland has discovered that floating turbines could be much more advantageous than renewables even when cost and environmental impact are considered. This would be better than projects like Tidal Lagoons that are hard to get off the ground as it requires a huge amount of investment with no return for several years. Similarly, the Swansea Bay project was also shelved as it required an investment of £1.3 Billion.
The advantage of the floating turbines is that it saves expenses on steel that is needed to fix the turbine underwater into the seabed. Moreover, it is situated far out on the sea where higher wind speed is available, generating more power. Also, fixed platforms can be placed at a depth of a maximum of 60m, but floating turbines can go up to 100m in the water.
As per officials of the project, as turbines are added, it would reduce costs because more power would be generated. They realized that their expenditure decreased by 70% per megawatt and hoped that a further 40% would also be achieved.
At present, UK offshore farms produce 10 gigawatts (GW) of power and have a target of making 40 GW by the year 2030. As per a recent Welsh report, two or three farms that produce 2 GW of power would be enough to power almost a million homes. In regards to the statistics, UK’s expected power would be able to cover a vast number of households, bringing it closer to its future targets of meeting energy needs through floating turbines.