The US Department of Energy is to spend US$28M funding research into new technology for floating wind energy.
Under the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) programme, Aerodynamic Turbines, Lighter and Afloat, with Nautical Technologies and Integrated Servo-control (Atlantis), the money will be spent developing new technology for floating offshore wind turbines using the discipline of control co-design (CCD).
“The US has 13,000 miles (21,000 km) of shoreline, which is a huge opportunity to lead the world in capitalising offshore wind,” says US Secretary of Energy Rick Perry. “The Atlantis projects will help advance American offshore wind production and the accompanying job, manufacturing, and investment growth for the nation.”
CCD brings together diverse engineering disciplines to work concurrently while designing a device, instead of in sequential steps. The CCD approach enables project teams to develop new ways to build floating offshore wind turbines that would not be possible using a traditional design approach.
Much of the best offshore wind resource in the US are found in waters too deep for bottom-fixed foundations. Floating turbines introduce a new set of technical challenges, however. To be successful, Atlantis projects will require design approaches that maximise power to weight ratios while maintaining or increasing turbine efficiency.
The funding opportunity encourages collaboration, calling on scientists, engineers, and practitioners from different disciplines, technology sectors, and organisations to form diverse and experienced project teams. ARPA-E projects are intended to facilitate scientific and technological discoveries that a single group alone would not be able to achieve.
The Offshore Wind Journal Conference in London on 5 February 2019 will address key issues including global market developments, increasing turbine sizes, floating offshore wind and industry regulations. Book your place now.