Industrialising wind turbine tech ‘could cut installation costs by 40%’

A wind energy consortium aims to make suction-bucket technology more widespread

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Industrialising innovative wind turbine foundation technology could help cut installation costs by 40%.

That’s according to a wind industry partnership seeking to demonstrate how the installation costs of offshore wind foundations could be slashed by making ‘suction-bucket technology’ more widespread.

The consortium, which includes Siemens Gamesa, Universal Foundation and Aalborg University, has been awarded €3.8 million (£3.35m) via the Danish Ministry of Energy, Utilities and Climate.

The technology involves upturned buckets sitting on the seabed able to provide a foundation for offshore infrastructure – they are quicker, easier and cheaper to install than deep monopiles, as well as easier to remove during decommissioning.

The consortium has already helped design a next-generation suction-bucket concept with an 8-by-8-metre prototype having been fabricated.

The prototype will now be used for the offshore trial installation campaign.

Søren Andreas Nielsen, Head of Research and Development at the Universal Foundation, said: “We all share the view that suction technology provides some obvious installation advantages, both in terms of environmental impact and costs.

“Cost of fabrication and supply security continue as one of the challenges to overcome for suction-buckets.”

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