Far and Large Offshore Wind energy

Dutch ambitions for offshore wind energy

By the year 2020, the Dutch government aims to have installed 6,000 MW of offshore wind energy capacity in the Netherlands to reach its renewable energy goals. Due to limitations such as shipping routes, oil and gas platforms, visual impact and ecology, only approximately 2,000-3,000 MW of the total of 6,000 MW can be installed within a 50-60 km distance from the shore. The remaining capacity will have to be installed

further away, "far offshore", in typical water depths of more than 30 meters, with larger challenges for foundations, installation and operation/maintenance of a wind farm. The ambition of the four most important European wind energy countries – the UK, Germany, Denmark and the Netherlands – is to have 31,000 MW of offshore wind energy capacity installed by 2020, of which an estimated ~40% will be installed far offshore.

Objectives and deliverables of FLOW

The main objective of FLOW is acceleration. FLOW will speed up the deployment of (far-)offshore wind energy to realize the 2020 6,000 MW target; as a first step, it will build a 100-300 MW demo wind farm far offshore which will be operational by Q3 2013.To achieve this, a significant cost & risk reduction of far-offshore wind energy – the second main objective – is necessary. Cost and risk reduction requires development of specific far-offshore competences. FLOW will reduce the costs and risks associated with offshore wind energy by more than 20% to improve commercial viability of offshore wind energy.

The R&D plan

The activities of FLOW will consist of an R&D Plan and the installation and operation of the FLOW demo wind farm. The R&D Plan will focus on the development of innovative, new technology for far-offshore wind farm design, support structures, far-offshore electrical systems and grid integration and far-offshore turbine development. These technologies will be demonstrated onshore, nearshore and far-offshore in the FLOW demo farm. FLOW will actively work with the government and other initiatives to also mobilize on- and nearshore test locations. Parallel to this, another part of the R&D Plan will develop "next generation" technologies for application in far-offshore wind farms to be realized in a later phase looking towards the 6,000 MW 2020 goal. The FLOW R&D Plan aims to reduce costs and risks related to far-offshore wind energy.

The R&D Plan consists of four R&D Themes, and incorporates 16 horizontal and 3 Societal R&D Lines. The R&D Lines directly relate to the main improvement levers that will enable cost and risk reduction.

The contribution of Duwind to the R&D plan

TU-Delft, by means of its wind energy R&D institute DUWIND, contributes significantly to the R&D programme, by its PhD programme. This programme encompasses 12 PhD's starting in the first phase, with some more following in next phases. Cooperation between the PHD's and with the other partners is essential. All PhD positions have at least one cooperating industry. A representative of this industry is part of the team of supervisors. Furthermore, each PhD will do an internship at the associated industry. Plans, progress and results will be presented within the FLOW consortium,at international conferences and in scientific journals.

The role of Duwind is to enable the cooperation between the PhD's. All PhD positions are at the faculties that contribute to Duwind. Applications for the positions should be sent to, and will be handled by, the faculties where the position is. The following positions are open in the first phase of FLOW, but some of them are designated for internal candidates only.