DOE to Floating Wind Turbine Technology: Go Back To Square One

A quick read of this announcement from the U.S. Department of Energy's ARPA-E agency may indicate a condemnation of current approaches to floating wind turbines and a decision to proceed by researching radically different design concepts.

Friday, February 1, 2019

Department of Energy Announces up to $28 Million for Offshore Wind Energy

ARPA-E Provides Funding for Pioneering Floating Turbine Designs

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Energy today announced up to $28 million in funding for a new Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) program, Aerodynamic Turbines, Lighter and Afloat, with Nautical Technologies and Integrated Servo-control (ATLANTIS). ATLANTIS projects will develop new technologies for floating, offshore wind turbines (FOWTs) using the discipline of control co-design (CCD).

“The United States has 13,000 miles of shoreline, which is a huge opportunity to lead the world in capitalizing offshore wind,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry. “The ATLANTIS projects will help advance American offshore wind production and the accompanying job, manufacturing, and investment growth for the nation.” 

Control co-design methodologies bring together diverse engineering disciplines to work concurrently while designing a device, instead of in sequential steps. The CCD approach enables project teams to develop new ways to build FOWTs that would not be possible using a traditional design approach. 

Much of the United States’ best offshore wind resources are found in waters too deep for traditional offshore wind turbines, which are fixed to the sea floor. Floating turbines introduce a new set of technical challenges, however. To be successful, ATLANTIS projects will require design approaches that maximize power to weight ratios while maintaining or increasing turbine efficiency.

The ATLANTIS funding opportunity encourages collaboration, calling on scientists, engineers, and practitioners from different disciplines, technology sectors, and organizations to form diverse and experienced project teams. ARPA-E projects are intended to facilitate scientific and technological discoveries that a single group alone would not be able to achieve.

For more information on ARPA-E’s ATLANTIS program, click here. To apply for funding, visit ARPA-E eXCHANGE here.

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https://arpa-e.energy.gov/?q=news-item/department-energy-announces-...

ATLANTIS

Aerodynamic Turbines Lighter and Afloat with Nautical Technologies and Integrated Servo-control
Program Status: 
Active
Program Description: 

Accessible U.S. offshore wind is estimated at more than 25 quads per year (a quad is one quadrillion BTUs, equivalent to 45 million tons of coal, 1 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, or 170 million barrels of crude oil). Nearly 60% of that wind energy—the equivalent of the entire U.S. annual electricity consumption—blows across waters more than 200 feet deep, an area that cannot be economically accessed today. Floating offshore wind turbine (FOWT) technology has tremendous promise to access wind resources in these areas, but the current state of the art for FOWT is too massive and expensive for practical deployment. ATLANTIS seeks to design radically new FOWTs by maximizing their rotor-area-to-total-weight ratio while maintaining or ideally increasing turbine generation efficiency; build a new generation of computer tools to facilitate FOWT design; and collect real data from full and lab-scale experiments to validate the FOWT designs and computer tools. The program encourages the application of control co-design (CCD) methodologies that integrate all relevant engineering disciplines at the start of the design process, with feedback control and dynamic interaction principles as the primary drivers of the design. CCD methodologies enable designers to analyze the interactions of FOWTs’ aero-, hydro-, elastic-, electric-, economic-, and servo-system dynamics, and propose solutions that permit optimal FOWT designs not achievable otherwise.

Innovation Need: 

FOWTs are currently designed to be large and heavy to replicate more familiar onshore wind turbine dynamics, maintain stability, and survive storms. However, this approach fundamentally limits how inexpensive FOWTs can ever become. Radically new designs that do not require a massive floating platform – applying the CCD approach of substituting mass by control systems – are needed. To design innovative, economically competitive FOWTs, researchers must overcome several significant technical barriers: insufficient current knowledge of how FOWT sub-system dynamics interact; insufficient computer tools for dynamic simulation; and a dearth of experimental data. ATLANTIS will address these technical barriers while exploring radically new FOWT design concepts that minimize mass and maximize productive rotor area to provide economical offshore wind power.

Potential Impact: 

ATLANTIS projects will aim to develop new and potentially disruptive innovations in FOWT technology to enable a greater market share of offshore wind energy, ultimately strengthening and diversifying the array of domestic energy sources available to Americans.

Security: 

Diverse, domestic energy resources can boost grid resiliency and reduce infrastructure vulnerabilities.

Environment: 

Increased availability of affordable, reliable wind energy could lessen reliance on fossil fuels, reducing power sector emissions.

Economy: 

Program developments in FOWTs could reduce the cost of wind energy production and provide an entirely new option for the offshore wind industry, as well as access to significant wind resources near major population centers on U.S. coastlines.

https://arpa-e.energy.gov/?q=arpa-e-programs/atlantis

ARPA-E Budget

ARPA-E’s initial $400 million budget was a part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. ARPA-E received $180 million in Fiscal Year (FY) 2011, $275 million in FY2012, $251 million in FY2013, $280 million in both FY2014 and FY2015, $294 million in FY2016, and $306 million in FY2017. Below you will find information on ARPA-E’s fiscal year budget requests.

https://arpa-e.energy.gov/?q=arpa-e-site-page/arpa-e-budget

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Comment by Bob Stone on November 6, 2019 at 4:36pm

Gen IV nuclear, please.

Comment by Willem Post on June 9, 2019 at 2:59pm

Hywind Scotland project is the world's first commercial wind turbine plant using floating wind turbines.

SEE URL

http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/deep-water-floating-off...

 

It is located 29 km (EIGHTEEN MILES) off PeterheadScotland to minimize visual impacts from shore.

It has five Hywind floating turbines with a total capacity of 30 MW.

It is operated by Hywind (Scotland) Limited, a joint venture of Equinor, Norway (75%) and Masdar, Kuwait (25%).

 

In 2015, Equinor received permission to install 5 Hywind turbines in Scotland.  

 

Manufacturing started in 2016 in Spain (wind turbine, rotor), Norway (tower, underwater base, assembly), and Scotland (various parts)

The turnkey capital cost was $263 million for five 6 MW turbines, or $8,767/kW.

They were designed to float on the surface, with about 180 m (600 ft) above the sea water level and 80 m (265 ft) submerged below the seawater level.

Total steel weight is about 2300 metric ton, total ballasted weight is about 20,000 metric ton.

Heavy weights in the bottom of the submerged parts serve to keep them steady and upright.

 

The turbines were assembled at Stord in Norway in the summer of 2017, using the specialized Saipem 7000 floating crane, and then towed to the north of Scotland by sea-going tugboats.

Make sure to see the videos showing the crane assembling the entire wind turbine.

Nothing like that exists in Maine, or in the rest of New England.

That means offshore wind turbine assembly and servicing would largely be performed by foreign companies, which already have built the infrastructures and other facilities during the past 25 years.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PUlfvXaISvc

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PmkA6hbJ_j8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQVU7UaMuck

 

The huge, sea-going, specialized, crane (14,000-metric ton lifting capacity) is required for partial assembly on land and final assembly in an area close to shore with a very deep harbor, before towing, fully assembled, to the site.

 

The finished turbines were towed to Peterhead, Scotland.  

Three cup anchors hold each turbine in place.

About 2400 meter of chain is required, weighing 400 metric ton, for each turbine.

The Hywind Scotland project was commissioned in October 2017.

LePage’s energy director, Steven McGrath, has focused exclusively on the cost of electricity from the demonstration project.

 

The rate is at least three times above wholesale market value, reflecting the custom design and experimental nature of the platforms.

 

It would start at 23 cents per kilowatt-hour in the first year, escalating at 2.5% per year to 35 cents after 20 years.

 

The PUC estimates it would add up to $208 million over the term, or about $10.5 million a year from Central Maine Power ratepayers. Maine Aqua Ventus had calculated the extra cost would add 73 cents a month to the average household electric bill, in the first year of operation, more thereafter.

  

That is a total rip-off, because Massachusetts pays only an average of 8 - 9 c/kWh over the life of the project.

Main bureaucrats need to learn from Governor Baker.

 

NOTE: The above prices should be compared with NE wholesale prices, which have been about 5 c/kWh since 2008, courtesy of abundant, domestic, low-cost, low-CO2 electricity from gas at about 5 c/kWh, and low-cost, near CO2-free electricity from nuclear at about 4.5 - 5.0 c/kWh.

 

This project is insanity on STEROIDS.

 

One has to feel sorry for the already-struggling Joe and Jane Workers in Maine who will ultimately pay for all this.

https://www.pressherald.com/2018/04/01/effort-to-build-offshore-win...

 

Comment by Penny Gray on February 5, 2019 at 7:38pm

Put that money into nuclear R&D.  

Comment by Eric A. Tuttle on February 5, 2019 at 1:23pm
Comment by Frank J. Heller, MPA on February 5, 2019 at 10:41am

Problem is transmission in deeper waters and in areas traversed by trawlers.

I bet UMO is going after this money.....why on Thursday, the U. of Maine will make an OFFSHORE WIND PRESENTATION to the Energy Utilities and Technology committee at 1 p.m.

ISO-NE will make one afterwards...topic ???

Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."

https://pinetreewatch.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/

 

Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power

 

Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT

******** IF LINKS BELOW DON'T WORK, GOOGLE THEM*********

(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-swept-task-force-set-the-rules/From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.” https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/flaws-in-bill-like-skating-with-dull-skates/

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