" ITREALMS: Offshore wind technologies rapidly become commercialized - ITREALMS

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Offshore wind technologies rapidly become commercialized - ITREALMS

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has said that offshore wind technologies are rapidly becoming commercialized, which result in keeping electricity cheaper, reports ITREALMS.

IRENA in its third Quarterly publication, made available to ITREALMS showed that in the year 2000, the world’s installed offshore wind capacity amounted to 67 megawatts (MW) – only enough to supply 33 500 average within European Union (EU) households with electricity.

By last year, IRENA said, this had reached almost 20 gigawatts (GW), which could, cumulatively, power a large United States (US) city like Los Angeles.

This growth has been driven by continual cost reduction, enabled by technology improvements and other developments in the offshore wind industry.

Since the first offshore wind farm operated in Denmark, in 1991, turbine blades have been getting bigger and foundations more diverse. Yet turbines anchored to the sea floor are still constrained by water depth, keeping areas with the greatest wind potential – some close to enormous markets, like Japanese or US cities – out of reach. This is set to change quickly, however, with the advent of floating foundations.

Until today, offshore wind power has mainly been developed in Europe. Further expansion depends on more research, continued technology improvements and achieving reliability in different environmental conditions.

Nenye Dom/GEE

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