The next generation of wind

A short piece that I recently wrote for Green Futures on the next generation of wind technology has now been published, highlighting a new way of expanding the scope for offshore wind in places where it has previously faced technical challenges.

The new technology, developed by the Norwegian oil & gas company StatoilHydro, is basically about using the same kind of stabilization technology that oil rigs have used to be able to float, just transplanted onto a much smaller level of individual turbines. Only a trial is underway, and the challenges involved may not be easy or quick to overcome – but the fascinating thing about this development was how it may enable the development of wind power in deepwater sites, including off the coasts of major population centres in the US and Japan where the shallow water needed for conventional wind turbines fixed to the seabed is in short supply.

Since I wrote this, the project has been officially launched – see a BBC report and video.

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