Giant new offshore wind generators, deploying innovative technology
Giant new offshore wind generators, deploying innovative technology, are to be launched as part of a major renewable energy drive. The announcement comes alongside a UK government promise to double grants for the technology to £10 million.
The new ?Aerogenerator?, a 275 metre wide rotating blade, is under development with a potential launch date of 2013. The blade would stand high above the sea, generating up to 20MW. By contrast, the latest generation of coal-fired power stations produce 180 times as much energy, so the key is to have a great many such wind machines.
Feargal Brennan, head of offshore engineering at Cranfield University, says: ?The UK has come late to the race, but with 40 years of oil and gas experience we have the chance to lead the world. The new Aerogenerator turbine is based on semi-submersible oil platform technology and does not have the same weight constraints as a normal wind turbine. The radical new design is half the height of an equivalent [conventional] turbine.?
The benefits of offshore wind generation include the reliable and consistent winds, along with less opposition and issues over planning. On the other hand, offshore wind farms are much more expensive to create and to maintain, since they are prone to corrosion.
Added the 29 July 2010 in category Innovation News