The CEO of X1Wind, Alex Raventós Agustí, was at the port of Las Palmas to present the new prototype of the floating offshore wind turbine. Designed using patented PivotBuoy® technology, this solution introduces innovations that reduce the costs of floating wind turbines, facilitate their scalability, and minimise their impact on the environment, and therefore represents a great opportunity for offshore wind energy.
The prototype was assembled at the Hidramar facilities and is now ready to be installed in the coming weeks; it will be towed and connected to the test site of the Oceanic Platform of the Canary Islands (PLOCAN) once the dynamic cable has been laid.
The unveiling ceremony brought together the president of the Island Council of Gran Canaria, Antonio Morales, the deputy regional minister for Economy and Internationalisation of the Canary Islands Government, Blas Acosta, the director general of Energy of the Canary Islands Government, Rosana Melián, the president of the Las Palmas Port Authority, Luis Ibarra, the director general of the Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI), Javier Ponce, the director of PLOCAN, José Joaquín Hernández Brito, and the director of the Hidramar shipyard in Las Palmas, Jhon Nestares, among other authorities and directors of the consortium of nine companies and institutions participating in the PivotBuoy project.
The prototype has been built to a reduced scale, and its main task is to validate all the proposed systems and innovations, and to learn more about systems already being applied to the design of large-scale platforms to support turbines of 15 mW or even more, each capable of supplying electricity to 20,000 homes.
The PivotBuoy technology introduces a new design that does away with the traditional wind tower by using instead a tripod structure that allows for more efficient load transmission, thus reducing the amount of material, the cost of manufacturing and the environmental footprint throughout its lifecycle.
European project with funding from the H2020 Programme and support from the CDTI
The PivotBuoy project has €4M in funding from the H2020 Programme and a consortium of nine European partners, including PLOCAN, as the test centre, five leading European companies (EDP, Intecsea, DNV, ESM and DEGIMA from Santander) and two centres of excellence, WavEC from Portugal and DTU from Denmark.
It has also received support from the CDTI through the NEOTEC programme, which has co-funded some of the key innovations, such as the conversion of the Vestas turbine from a traditional upwind configuration to a downwind configuration, and part of the subsystems and sensors incorporated in the prototype for validating its performance during testing.
More than 100 national suppliers have participated in the development of PivotBuoy, including more than 40 companies and institutions from the Canary Islands, thus demonstrating the great potential impact of the sector on the national and regional value chain.