First Semi-Submersible Floating Wind Farm Fully Operational

Source: By Michael Bates, North American Wind Power • Posted: Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Following the connection of the last of the three platforms to the 20-m export cable connecting the WindFloat Atlantic to the substation at Viana do Castelo, Portugal, the construction of the floating offshore wind farm has been completed.

WindFloat Atlantic, which has a total installed capacity of 25 MW, is the world’s first semi-submersible floating wind farm.

This milestone cements the success of a decade-long project by the Windplus joint venture, ensuring access to wind resources in water depths that have previously been inaccessible. Windplus has successfully installed and connected three platforms – measuring 30 m in height with a 50-m distance between columns – which are able to accommodate 8.4 MW turbines – the world’s largest-ever installed on a floating platform.

The project’s mooring technology allows for installation in waters over 100 m deep, and its design offers stability in adverse weather and sea conditions. Dry-dock assembly provided significant logistical and financial savings, and the platforms were towed using standard tug boats.

These technical advantages, among others, demonstrate that Windfloat Atlantic’s model is replicable in other areas where adverse seabed conditions – or significant water depth – mean that traditional bottom-fixed offshore wind technology is not an option.