February 18, 2019

Feature article – The future of wind power generation

We are witnessing the most exciting time for the renewables industry in real time. As the worldwide demand for renewable energy is growing, many companies are supporting and driving the innovation of competitive clean power. With many countries setting goals for renewable energy supply targets and the completion of the first offshore wind project in the United States, the future of wind power generation is in the hands of visionaries.  

One vision coming to fruition is offshore floating wind farms. These floating structures have the potential to unlock new energy opportunities because they allow wind turbines to generate electricity virtually anywhere, regardless of water depth, where fixed-foundation turbines are not feasible. In addition, countries with limited shallow waters can substantially increase the areas available for wind power generation by developing windfarms offshore. Locating future windfarm projects offshore can also reduce visual pollution, provide better accommodation for fishing and shipping lanes, and reach stronger and more consistent winds. 

In floating production environments, subsea electrical power cables are used to inter-connect floating structures on offshore windfarms and the cables also run between the substation (electrical hub of the windfarm) and the shore. Securing, guiding and protecting these critical power cables from excessive movement or bending that could potentially cause fatigue damage in the demanding offshore environment is of utmost importance.  

Cable failures or faults can severely impact a windfarm’s performance and revenue. Incorporating dynamic cable protection into the design of the windfarm can help prevent early cable erosion due to insufficient protection against the current or extreme tensions on the cables as they are being deployed or retrieved from the water. 

With an extensive track record, CRP Subsea (formerly Trelleborg Offshore UK) is the supplier of choice when it comes to buoyancy, bend and cable protection for the offshore wind sector and our solutions can be found on most current offshore wind projects around the world.  

As the market expands into challenging new regions, we look forward to sharing our dynamic cable protection expertise for offshore floating structures and are excited to take part in the future developments of this industry.  

Andy Smith, Sales Team Manager, CRP Subsea 

Daniel Bate, Sales Manager, CRP Subsea