WIT Press

Technology For Offshore Wind Turbines


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WIT Press


G. Moe, J. M. Niedzwecki, H. Long, R. Lubbad & S.-P. Breton


A selective and incomplete review of the status of the development of offshore wind turbines is given. The main focus is on state of the art and emerging solutions, and emphasis is on solutions for deep water. Keywords: offshore wind turbines, deep water, floating wind turbines, truss towers. 1 Introduction 1.1 General The world consumption of oil and gas is increasing by about 2% each year, in recent years mainly due to economic growth in Asia, while new hydrocarbon resources are not found in sufficient quantities to keep up with this apparent ever-increasing demand. Some experts argue that we are at or close to ‘peak oil’, i.e. that the all-time maximum production rate has been reached. If that is correct oil prices will have to rise until oil consumption matches the slowly decreasing oil availability. The necessary strategy to cope with this new situation should probably combine energy conservation with increased energy production from non-petroleum sources. Among the alternative sources are oil tar sands, coal, and nuclear energy, but the two former would cause severe environmental problems, while the latter among other factors has security implications. Wind energy is probably a better alternative, since in good locations energy from wind turbines can be produced at prices that are competitive in today’s energy market, even before factoring in their environmental benefits. The problem is that in order to contribute significantly to the energy balance extensive wind park developments are required and then public acceptance becomes uncertain. Therefore offshore


offshore wind turbines, deep water, floating wind turbines, truss towers.