EDP gets EU funding for demonstration offshore wind project

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EDP gets EU funding for demonstration offshore wind project

EDP has been granted non-reimbursable financing of €19.2m from the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Programme to develop new technology for offshore wind power. DEMOGRAVI3 is a project that aims to develop an innovative gravity based foundation for offshore wind turbines.

The project will last for four years and will include a full-scale demonstration in a real-life environment off Aguçadoura, Póvoa de Varzim, in northern Portugal.

The total budget for the project amounts to €26.8 million.

According to António Mexia, CEO of EDP: 

"This initiative strengthens EDP’s commitment to an emerging area of wind production with strong growth potential. By increasing competitiveness and their contribution to the fight against climate change, the installed capacity of renewable energy will tend to grow faster than in recent decades, and oceans will play a key role in this expansion".

There is currently 8GW installed offshore in Europe, a still limited fraction compared to the 120GW installed on land. In 2020, offshore capacity is expected to rise to between 21 and 30 GW.

The consortium developing this new project will be coordinated by EDP, through EDPR. DEMOGRAVI3 will test a wind turbine with an innovative gravitational foundation made of concrete and steel. This turbine will be installed on the Aguçadoura Offshore Wind Demonstration Farm, about 6km off the Portuguese coast, taking advantage of the underwater cable connecting the WindFloat turbine to a substation on land, which will be decommissioned meanwhile to make way for Phase 2 of the project, to be installed in Viana do Castelo.

Unlike the solution based on a floating platform successfully tested with Windfloat, DEMOGRAVI3 will be installed on the seabed, although it will already be assembled and floated to the mooring place. The whole structure of the turbine and its constituent elements will be assembled on shore and then transported. The main innovation of this structure thus avoids the necessity for heavy lift vessels to anchor and assemble all the turbine components in an offshore environment.

The main aims of the project:

  • To test and develop technology that is innovative worldwide for the installation of offshore wind turbines at an average water depth (30m to 60m deep); 
  • To gain skills and expertise across the value chain of offshore wind energy, from design and manufacture to operation and maintenance;
  • To study the technical feasibility of this solution, as well as the business models that could result from it, creating value in this area for the EDP Group.

EDP is represented by EDP Renováveis - which will coordinate the entire project - and NEW R&D - Centre for New Energy Technologies, which will lead demonstration work.

Several European partners from different areas of competence are also participating in the project:

  • ASM Energia (Portugal)
  • Técnica y Proyectos SA (Spain)
  • Univ. Politécnica de Madrid, Harbour Research Lab. (Spain)
  • WavEC Offshore Renewables (Portugal)
  • Acciona Infraestructuras (Spain)
  • Fraunhofer Gesellschaft IWES (Germany)
  • Gavin & Doherty Geo Solutions (Ireland)
  • Global Maritime AS (Norway)

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