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19th September 2016 Universal Foundation is exhibiting at WindEnergy Hamburg next week

Universal Foundation is exhibiting at WindEnergy Hamburg 2016 next week between 27th and 30th September in Hamburg. Also exhibiting on our stand are Fred. Olsen related companies Global Wind Service and Fred. Olsen Windcarrier. We will be hosting a stand reception on day 2 of the event from 16:00, where we will be serving cocktails and canapes, ...

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Universal Foundation is exhibiting at WindEnergy Hamburg 2016 next week between 27th and 30th September in Hamburg. Also exhibiting on our stand are Fred. Olsen related companies Global Wind Service and Fred. Olsen Windcarrier.

We will be hosting a stand reception on day 2 of the event from 16:00, where we will be serving cocktails and canapes, we hope to see you there!

We look forward to catching up with our clients and colleagues during the exhibition. Visit us on stand B4 EG 326!

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14th June 2016 Universal Foundation is exhibiting at RUK Global Offshore Wind next week

Universal Foundation will be exhibiting at RenewableUK Global Offshore Wind 2016 next week in Manchester between 21st and 22nd June. Also exhibiting on our stand are Fred. Olsen Windcarrier and Global Wind Service. We will be hosting a stand reception on Day 1 of the exhibition from 16:30 where we will be serving cocktails and canapes, we hope to see you ...

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Universal Foundation will be exhibiting at RenewableUK Global Offshore Wind 2016 next week in Manchester between 21st and 22nd June. Also exhibiting on our stand are Fred. Olsen Windcarrier and Global Wind Service.

We will be hosting a stand reception on Day 1 of the exhibition from 16:30 where we will be serving cocktails and canapes, we hope to see you there!

We look forward to catching up with colleagues and clients, visit us at stand 124.

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31st May 2016 Cleveland wind project awarded $40 million DOE grant to develop Lake wind farm

CLEVELAND, Ohio — The U.S. Department of Energy is awarding $40 million to the Lake Erie Energy Development Corp. to build a six-turbine pilot wind farm in Lake Erie by the end of 2018. The award caps a 10-year struggle that began as an idea in the mind of Cleveland Foundation President and CEO Ronn Richard upon his arrival in Cleveland. The ...

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CLEVELAND, Ohio — The U.S. Department of Energy is awarding $40 million to the Lake Erie Energy Development Corp. to build a six-turbine pilot wind farm in Lake Erie by the end of 2018.

The award caps a 10-year struggle that began as an idea in the mind of Cleveland Foundation President and CEO Ronn Richard upon his arrival in Cleveland.

The money will be delivered in three $13.3 million grants, provided LEEDCo. continues to meet engineering, permitting and construction goals set by the DOE.

To make the award, the DOE withdrew funding from two offshore ocean projects that had not kept up with the department’s interim engineering benchmarks.

U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur, the ranking member of the House Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittee, announced the $40 million grant Friday morning on a patio at the Great Lakes Science Museum overlooking the lake.

Unlike so many previous LEEDCo hopeful announcements at the same location, this one had more of a tone of victory, instead of merely another update.

Mayor Frank Jackson, Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish and LEEDCo President Lorry Wagner spoke about solving the engineering problems and overcoming political obstacles to get the project this far.

Richard talked about jobs, about re-branding the city and about the intent of Ohio’s state lawmakers who are now trying to permanently freeze the state’s renewable energy standards.

Kaptur said the small wind farm should be the beginning of a new wind-powered energy grid along the southern shores of the Great Lakes from Buffalo to Toledo initially, but extending into Canada and points west, as well.

“There is something that will be born here that is larger than this installation. What will be born is the concept of a new grid, not just for this region but for the entire Great Lakes,” she said. 

“It isn’t every day that a place in America receives $40 million. I congratulate the collaboration that you have managed to achieve here and the perseverance that allowed this project to both be funded and carried forward.”

Wagner said LEEDCo already has 15 local companies involved in the project and hopes to attract more. Fabrication and construction will create 500 jobs, he said.

Agreeing with Kaptur, Wagner said the underlying goal of the project “is to position us to take hold of the future, whatever that future is, whether it is manufacturing for the Atlantic coast or putting wind turbines in the lake, if we are not a leader in the industry, then we cannot control our future. This project is about leading the nation in clean energy.”

Jackson and Budish focused on the potential economic impact of the project, which from the very beginning has been seen as a way to jump-start manufacturing and create jobs.

“This is about positioning Cleveland and the region for the future,” said Jackson. “We already have manufacturing of [turbine] parts in this region. This will give us the ability to not only manufacture parts but to assemble turbines here. We want to position Cleveland to be an exporter . . . to provide this technology to North America.”

Budish said the project “represents the best in collaboration” in this community and between the county and the city. So many people, so many organizations worked together to make this happen,” he said.

Budish recalled sitting in an office listening to Richard talk about building hundreds, even thousands, of turbines in the lake and thinking to himself, “I don’t know about this guy.”

Richard credited the bi-partisan efforts by not only Kaptur and Republican U.S. Rep. David Joyce, but also by Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown and Republican Sen. Rob Portman. He also credited Gov. John Kasich and his Democratic predecessor Ted Strickland.

Calling Lake Erie “our greatest fixed asset,” Richard said thousands of lake-based wind turbines would be an environmental asset because they help replace coal-burning, a national security asset and a powerful economic stimulus. 

“I think it will also change the brand of Cleveland to ‘Cleveland, powered by wind,'” he said.

“Someday, I would like to see Cleveland off the grid, so that if we have a cyber attack, we will be immune — which will help us attract more companies, especially defense industry companies.”

Richard also used the occasion to talk about the wisdom of state lawmakers who seem intent on permanently freezing Ohio’s renewable energy standards. Created in 2008, the standards would require that 12.5 percent of the electricity sold in the state be generated with renewable technologies.

“Ohio was first in flight … and we need to be first in advanced energy. if you think of the Wright Brothers in 1903, if the state legislature then had decided to not allow planes to take off or land in Ohio, it would not have prevented the aviation industry from occurring in the United States, it would just have ensured that it did not happen in Ohio,” he said.

LEEDCo’s decision to adopt the European-designed “Mono Bucket” foundation, which eliminates pile driving in the bedrock below the lake bed, may have been crucial to the DOE’s decision to fully fund the project.

“The innovative Mono Bucket foundation will reduce installation time, costs, and environmental impacts compared to traditional foundations that require pile driving,” a DOE analysis states. “The Mono Bucket not only is a solution for the Great Lakes, but also has broader national applicability for offshore wind installations off the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts.”

LEEDCo previously received three DOE grants totaling $10.7 million. The $40 million award will take the federal share to more than $50 million.

The Cleveland Foundation has given LEEDCo, or its predecessor, $1.7 million.

Total cost of the project to prove that a fresh-water wind farm can survive ice floes has been estimated at about $120 million.

LEEDCo’s European partner, Fred. Olsen Renewables, the largest independent power producer in the United Kingdom and the fifth largest in Europe, is expected to raise the remaining $70 million through a combination of bank loans and private equity investors.

Source: http://www.cleveland.com/business/index.ssf/2016/05/cleveland_wind_project_awarded.html#incart_email

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24th May 2016 The Universal Foundation Workshop 2016 a success

Last week the third Universal Foundation workshop successfully took place at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Hamburg, attracting around 100 delegates from over 50 companies. “The workshop is designed to bring together key stakeholders in the industry, to share and spread knowledge on suction technology,” Universal Foundation’s Managing Director Kristian Ravn said. “It was a great success and the perfect forum ...

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Last week the third Universal Foundation workshop successfully took place at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Hamburg, attracting around 100 delegates from over 50 companies.

“The workshop is designed to bring together key stakeholders in the industry, to share and spread knowledge on suction technology,” Universal Foundation’s Managing Director Kristian Ravn said. “It was a great success and the perfect forum to discuss the future of foundations and how suction technology contributes to reduce the cost of offshore wind.”

Universal Foundation discussed the Mono Bucket foundation and an external presenter from DBB Jack-up Services showed delegates how the seabed at Horns Rev 2 had returned to normal after the successful removal of the met. mast and supporting Mono Bucket after six years in operation. There was also a project update on Fred. Olsen Windbase, the “game-changer” for O&M, which can utilise the Mono Bucket technology.

As per tradition one dedicated delegate was awarded the “Golden Bucket” for a quote which perfectly captured the general conclusions of the event: “I think that the Mono Bucket is a beautiful design in regards to the noise concerns, and will definitely give monopiles a challenging future”.

The workshop had a mix of speakers and panel discussions, with participants from Fred. Olsen related companies Universal Foundation, Fred. Olsen Ocean and Fred. Olsen Windcarrier as well as LEEDCo, The Carbon Trust, Siemens Wind Power, Van Oord and more.

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11th December 2015 Universal Foundation Welcomes New Managing Director

Kristian Ravn, who comes from the position of Managing Director at Semco Maritime Norway, has joined Universal Foundation, a Fred. Olsen related company, as Managing Director this month. “I have a strong belief in the Mono Bucket and have been impressed with the professionalism and drive of Universal Foundation during the years of development, design and testing of this innovative product,” ...

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Kristian Ravn, who comes from the position of Managing Director at Semco Maritime Norway, has joined Universal Foundation, a Fred. Olsen related company, as Managing Director this month.

“I have a strong belief in the Mono Bucket and have been impressed with the professionalism and drive of Universal Foundation during the years of development, design and testing of this innovative product,” Kristian Ravn said.

“I am sure that the technology will provide a strong contribution in bringing down costs for offshore wind farms, at the same time reducing risks and environmental impact.”

Kristian started his career at MT Højgaard before spending ten years at ABB, starting in 2003 as a structural engineer and working his way up to Vice President of the Denmark business unit.

During his time at Semco Maritime Norway, Kristian was responsible for the “Think New!” strategy, an innovative drive to make the company a more cost-effective alternative to larger Norwegian competitors. Semco Maritime is an EPCI-contractor for the offshore Oil and Gas sector.

“Kristian is innovative by heart and has extensive experience in large scale project deliveries. We feel he is the perfect fit with Universal,” Rolf Normann, CEO of Fred. Olsen Ocean said.

Kristian has an MSc in Structural Engineering and holds a certificate in Business Administration (HD-O), specialised in innovation.

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22nd September 2015 Mono Bucket shortlisted for RenewableUK Breakthrough Award

We are delighted that our Mono Bucket foundation has been shortlisted for the RenewableUK Breakthrough Award. The winners will be announced at the RenewableUK Gala Dinner in Liverpool’s St. George’s Hall on 7th October. We hope to see you there. http://www.renewableuk.com/en/events/conferences-and-exhibitions/renewableuk-2015-awards/awards/index.cfm

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We are delighted that our Mono Bucket foundation has been shortlisted for the RenewableUK Breakthrough Award.

The winners will be announced at the RenewableUK Gala Dinner in Liverpool’s St. George’s Hall on 7th October.

We hope to see you there.

http://www.renewableuk.com/en/events/conferences-and-exhibitions/renewableuk-2015-awards/awards/index.cfm

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9th July 2015 First Mono Bucket is decommissioned after 6 years of service

On 7th July, the meteorological mast, supported by a Mono Bucket foundation, at the Horns Rev 2 wind farm, Denmark, was successfully decommissioned.  The met. mast was no longer required at the Horns Rev 2 wind farm by the current owner Dong Energy. The Mono Bucket was one of the very first to be employed and has been in situ for ...

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On 7th July, the meteorological mast, supported by a Mono Bucket foundation, at the Horns Rev 2 wind farm, Denmark, was successfully decommissioned.  The met. mast was no longer required at the Horns Rev 2 wind farm by the current owner Dong Energy.

The Mono Bucket was one of the very first to be employed and has been in situ for 6 years, having been installed in March 2009. The weight of the foundation is 165t with a total height of 38meters. It was installed to within 0.1 degree of true vertical and with a 0.6m stick-up.

The Mono Bucket has been completely removed from the site by DBB Jack-Up Services by reversing the suction process. By applying pressure into the Mono Bucket the foundation was lifted from the seabed, leaving it unmarked.

Universal Foundation’s Head of Business Development, Kristian Jacobsen said: “Since 2009 the project has served as a key showcase to Universal Foundation and proved the feasibility of the Mono Bucket in an offshore working environment. The installation itself was innovative in the sense that the foundation was floated to the site by means of two simple tug boats, installation was quick and during operations the Mono Bucket required no scour protection proving that our system works. We are now delighted to add a successful decommissioning of the foundation to the project results. This is yet another testimony to the feasibility and flexibility of the Mono Bucket and suction technology in offshore wind”.

For DBB Jack-Up Services this was an important step in expanding into offshore wind decommissioning: “Combined with the experience and skills of the DBB Jack-Up project organisation, our crew and jack-up vessels have once again completed a very challenging decommissioning task” says Ole Jacob W. Nielsen, Chief Commercial Officer of DBB Jack-Up Services A/S, and continues: “In the race for cost-reduction we need to allow ourselves to step off the beaten track to test innovative solutions like the Mono Bucket foundation.”

The Mono Bucket has recently been chosen to support 6 3MW turbines at the Icebreaker project in the United States.

Image courtesy of DBB Jack-Up Services A/S

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22nd June 2015 Universal Foundation is exhibiting at RUK Global Offshore Wind this week

Universal Foundation is exhibiting at RenewableUK Global Offshore Wind 2015 this week between 24th and 25th June. Also exhibiting on our stand are related companies Fred. Olsen Windcarrier and Global Wind Service. We will be hosting a stand reception on our stand on Day 1 of the exhibition from 17:00. We’ll be serving cocktails and canapés, we hope to see you ...

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Universal Foundation is exhibiting at RenewableUK Global Offshore Wind 2015 this week between 24th and 25th June. Also exhibiting on our stand are related companies Fred. Olsen Windcarrier and Global Wind Service.

We will be hosting a stand reception on our stand on Day 1 of the exhibition from 17:00. We’ll be serving cocktails and canapés, we hope to see you there!

We look forward to catching up with our colleagues and clients at the exhibition. Visit us at stand 62.

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2nd June 2015 Icebreaker Offshore Wind Project to Incorporate New Foundation Design

Mono Bucket foundations by Universal Foundation will increase efficiency and reduce costs. The Lake Erie Energy Development Corporation (LEEDCo) announced today that the Icebreaker offshore wind project planned for the Ohio waters of Lake Erie will utilize an innovative foundation design developed in Europe. Mono Bucket foundations, developed by Denmark-based Universal Foundation (UF), will significantly reduce installation costs for the pilot ...

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Mono Bucket foundations by Universal Foundation will increase efficiency and reduce costs.

The Lake Erie Energy Development Corporation (LEEDCo) announced today that the Icebreaker offshore wind project planned for the Ohio waters of Lake Erie will utilize an innovative foundation design developed in Europe. Mono Bucket foundations, developed by Denmark-based Universal Foundation (UF), will significantly reduce installation costs for the pilot project compared to the modified monopile concept LEEDCo developed in 2013.

“Universal Foundation’s Mono Bucket foundation recently emerged as one of the most promising technology developments in the European offshore wind industry,” said Lorry Wagner, president of LEEDCo. “We are always vigilant about finding the most cost-effective solutions to build a competitive industry in Lake Erie and we’re excited to be the first to deploy this state-of-the-art innovation in U.S. waters.”

To evaluate the Mono Bucket design, LEEDCo considered its technical performance, manufacturing costs, installation costs and comparative risks. LEEDCo’s evaluation team included veteran offshore wind engineers from UK-based Offshore Design Engineering and wind industry supply chain experts from Cleveland-based GLWN (formerly Great Lakes Wind Network).

“Our evaluation concluded that the Mono Bucket will achieve significant cost savings while meeting the technical performance requirements for Lake Erie’s soil and winter weather conditions,” Wagner said. “It is lighter than our original concept, requires significantly less time on the water during construction, and can be fabricated locally.”

The Mono Bucket foundation is an all-in-one steel structure consisting of a monopile shaft attached to a large-diameter bucket. It is installed with a unique suction system that requires no pile driving or dredging – eliminating noise and soil disturbance. A prototype has been supporting a 3MW turbine in Denmark since 2002. A second prototype has been supporting a met mast at Horns Rev 2 in Denmark since 2009.

In 2011, UF was selected as one of four finalists in the Carbon Trust Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) competition, an initiative led by the nine largest utilities in Europe to identify and de-risk promising technology innovations in the offshore wind industry. Backed by the OWA program, UF successfully installed two met masts at Dogger Bank in the middle of the North Sea in 2013. A year later, UF completed a series of 29 successful trial installations in various challenging soil conditions off the east coast of England. This campaign was a joint effort among Universal Foundation, the Carbon Trust, Statoil, DONG Energy, E.ON and Statkraft. In addition to Icebreaker, Mono Buckets are also being considered for a number of European projects.

“After more than a decade of R&D work, trial installations and due diligence, we are thrilled that the Mono Bucket foundation has reached the appropriate level of industry acceptance to begin deployment in commercial projects. We very much look forward to delivering an optimized total solution in close cooperation with related company, Fred. Olsen Windcarrier, who has previously been selected as a member of LEEDCo’s team,” said UF CEO Torgeir Ramstad. “We are proud to partner with LEEDCo to be a part of the first offshore wind project in Lake Erie.”

UF will join LEEDCo’s team to complete the detailed design of the Mono Bucket foundations for the Icebreaker project. The team will work closely with U.S. steel fabricators to ensure the design is optimized for fabrication in the United States. The final design will be complete in early 2016.

“This is yet another innovation we are bringing to the U.S. offshore wind industry that will help meet the U.S. Department of Energy’s cost of energy targets,” Wagner said. “Not only does it move Icebreaker forward, it enables the Lake Erie region to become a central hub of the U.S. offshore wind industry.”

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1st June 2015 Universal Foundation speaking at International Conference Offshore Foundations

Kristian Jacobsen, Head of Business Development at Universal Foundation in Denmark, will be holding a presentation on “Driving the Universal Foundation Mono Bucket to commercial readiness” at the fifth International Conference Offshore Foundations from 01 – 03 July 2015 in Swissôtel, Bremen, Germany. The presentation will cover following topics: De-risking of suction technology Field results and installation experience at Hornsea, Dogger Bank ...

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Kristian Jacobsen, Head of Business Development at Universal Foundation in Denmark, will be holding a presentation on “Driving the Universal Foundation Mono Bucket to commercial readiness” at the fifth International Conference Offshore Foundations from 01 – 03 July 2015 in Swissôtel, Bremen, Germany. The presentation will cover following topics:

  • De-risking of suction technology
  • Field results and installation experience at Hornsea, Dogger Bank and Dudgeon
  • Economic potential and cost-reductions for deepwater sites

Find out more information about the event here: http://bit.ly/offshore_foundations_event_2015

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22nd April 2015 Universal Foundation on cusp of Denmark deal

Universal Foundation has this week participated in two rare and exclusive articles revealing some of the possible up-coming plans for the company. Read the Recharge article ‘Universal Foundation on cusp of Denmark deal’ Read the TU article ‘Dette vindmølle-fundamentet suger seg ned i havbunnen’

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Universal Foundation has this week participated in two rare and exclusive articles revealing some of the possible up-coming plans for the company.

Read the Recharge article ‘Universal Foundation on cusp of Denmark deal’

Read the TU article ‘Dette vindmølle-fundamentet suger seg ned i havbunnen’

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18th March 2015 Prize Poster for Universal Foundation PhD Fellow

Universal Foundation Industrial PhD Fellow and Project Engineer, Ionut Emanuel Stroescu received an award last week during EWEA Offshore 2015 in Copenhagen, for a poster entered into the science and research category. The awarded poster titled ’Scour Behaviours of Bucket Foundations’ displayed results from surveys carried around the installed Mono Buckets in Horns Rev II and Dogger Bank in North Sea. Mr. ...

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Universal Foundation Industrial PhD Fellow and Project Engineer, Ionut Emanuel Stroescu received an award last week during EWEA Offshore 2015 in Copenhagen, for a poster entered into the science and research category.

The awarded poster titled ’Scour Behaviours of Bucket Foundations’ displayed results from surveys carried around the installed Mono Buckets in Horns Rev II and Dogger Bank in North Sea.
Mr. Stroescu studies the scour development around Mono Buckets as part of the Industrial PhD program that he is enrolled in at Aalborg University. The research programme is carried out under the supervision of Peter Frigaard from Aalborg University and Morten Fejerskov and Søren Andreas Nielsen from Universal Foundation A/S.

The objective of the research is to study the scour development phenomenon around Mono Buckets, to assess the suitable environmental ranges to which no scour protection is required and assess the risk of designs with no scour protection.

‘I am proud of this accolade and honoured that the poster was so well received by the judges. I look forward to continuing my work in this field, contributing to the body of knowledge regarding scour behaviour and suction buckets’ said Mr. Stroescu.

Download the prize winning poster Scour Behaviours of Bucket Foundations

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11th March 2015 Mono Buckets ready for commercial deployment will bring down LCoE

Delegates in attendance at the second Universal Foundation Workshop recently in Hamburg heard how suction technology will be the answer to significant cost reduction for the offshore wind industry. Attended by 130 leading experts, the event provided a unique platform for open sharing of information concerning suction bucket technology in offshore wind and followed the hugely successful introduction workshop which took ...

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Delegates in attendance at the second Universal Foundation Workshop recently in Hamburg heard how suction technology will be the answer to significant cost reduction for the offshore wind industry.

Attended by 130 leading experts, the event provided a unique platform for open sharing of information concerning suction bucket technology in offshore wind and followed the hugely successful introduction workshop which took place in 2014.

“We had to double the capacity of the event for 2015 after last years’ workshop was oversubscribed” said Kristian Ascanius Jacobsen, Head of Business Development at Universal Foundation. “We are very proud to see so many key people taking interest in our workshops. To us it is a clear sign that suction buckets are gaining rapid traction in the industry and our clients are realising the significant technical, environmental and commercial benefits the technology can bring to their portfolio”.

The event was opened by announcing that Universal Foundation’s concept from now on will be named the “Mono Bucket”. This was followed by a surprise visit from Mr. Fred. Olsen who took to the stage to share his vision of significant cost reductions in the offshore wind industry – setting the scene perfectly for the two day event. Participants’ recognised that Fred. Olsen, who has vast experience in offshore and marine business, is passionate about offshore wind and sees the Mono Bucket as one of the critical steps forward in delivering the cost reduction in support of his vision.

Mr. Fred. Olsen gave delegates a sneak preview of a new concept utilising the Mono Bucket to support movable accommodation and service units, due to be officially launched at EWEA Offshore this week.

Throughout the event delegates received a unique insight into Universal Foundation’s Mono Bucket, including the operational experience from the two Mono Bucket foundations supporting met. masts at the Dogger Bank site in the UK since 2013, and the key lessons learned from the Trial Installation – the most recent offshore campaign which was successfully concluded in September 2014.

Marc Costa Ros, Senior Manager at the Carbon Trust highlighted the strong support the suction bucket technology continues to receive under the Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) programme. He pointed out that the two met. mast Mono Buckets gave the industry partners an appetite to initiate the Trial Installation campaign and in parallel, launch the DONG Energy suction bucket jacket concept.

“The Trial Installation is a comprehensive joint industry effort between Statoil, Statkraft, E.ON, DONG Energy, Carbon Trust, Aalborg University and EUDP. Based on the 29 installations performed in a record breaking 24 days, we have secured the partners access to a unique soil data base” said Mr. Jacobsen. “We have gained highly valuable information about soil sensitivity, penetration ability, control of verticality, new installation techniques, seabed levelling ability and more. The project was recognized by all as one of the final major steps towards de-risking of suction technology in the offshore wind industry”.

The audience also heard from clients and third parties including presentations from Tor Inge Tjelta from Statoil who shared close to 30 years of experience with suction technology from oil and gas, Gerrit Schmitt from Mareval who presented the lessons learned from using suction technology to deploy the transformer station at Global Tech I and Michael Hauschildt from DNV GL who gave guidance on the requirements from the certifying community’s perspective. Professor Dr. Martin Skiba closed day one with reflections on the market developments in Germany.

Day two saw the focus on how the Mono Bucket design can be driven towards large scale deployment. Jonathan Guest from Harland & Wolff discussed how the industry can learn and adapt LEAN principles from the automotive industry. Barbara Zuiderwijk, founder and partner of Green Giraffe, completed the session by addressing how innovations can be accepted by the financing community.

Building on last years’ success, participants were once again encouraged to share their honest opinions and concerns in an open and informal setting. Panel discussions both days demonstrated active and constructive engagement from all participants.

“This helps us to continuously improve the Mono Bucket and build on the industry’s shared knowledge of suction technology as a whole. It provides an ideal opportunity for us to address any outstanding questions in the industry.”

With the second event concluded we look forward to seeing delegates back next year. Now that the Mono Bucket has completed the testing phase it is ready for commercial projects and we soon hope to announce a commercial demonstration project with a Mono Bucket supporting a multi MW turbine”, concludes Mr. Jacobsen.

Universal Foundation also looks forward to welcoming participants at EWEA Offshore to their exhibition stand (C2-A18), shared with related companies Fred. Olsen Windcarrier and Global Wind Service, where Mr. Fred. Olsen’s preview announcement at the workshop will be revealed.

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9th March 2015 Mr. Fred. Olsen’s exclusive interview

Fred. Olsen has spent most of his long and fascinating career avoiding the media spotlight. Recently he granted Fortune the first extensive interviews he’s ever conducted. Read the article about Mr. Olsen’s incredible life here in Fortune Magazine and find out about how he came to be so passionate about Offshore Wind – and watches! (Image courtesy of Franck Ferville—Agence ...

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Fred. Olsen has spent most of his long and fascinating career avoiding the media spotlight. Recently he granted Fortune the first extensive interviews he’s ever conducted.

Read the article about Mr. Olsen’s incredible life here in Fortune Magazine and find out about how he came to be so passionate about Offshore Wind – and watches!

(Image courtesy of Franck Ferville—Agence VU for Fortune)

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18th February 2015 Universal Foundation exhibiting at EWEA Offshore Wind 2015

Universal Foundation is delighted to be exhibiting at EWEA Offshore 2015 in Copenhagen, Denmark between 10th and 12th March. Fred. Olsen related companies Global Wind Service and Fred. Olsen Windcarrier will also be exhibiting on the stand. We will be hosting a stand reception on Wednesday 11th March. The exclusive invitation-only reception will take place between 16:30 – 18:30. We will be celebrating ...

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Universal Foundation is delighted to be exhibiting at EWEA Offshore 2015 in Copenhagen, Denmark between 10th and 12th March.

Fred. Olsen related companies Global Wind Service and Fred. Olsen Windcarrier will also be exhibiting on the stand.

We will be hosting a stand reception on Wednesday 11th March. The exclusive invitation-only reception will take place between 16:30 – 18:30.

We will be celebrating the completion of our trial installation campaign which saw 29 successful installations in 24 days, leading to unprecedented knowledge of soil/structure behaviour of suction technology in offshore wind.

We look forward to catching up with our colleagues and clients at the exhibition. Visit us at stand C2-A18.

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3rd November 2014 Universal Foundation put through its paces across major UK Round 3 project sites

The next generation offshore wind foundation from Universal Foundation has recently completed a trial installation campaign across three major offshore wind sites in the UK North Sea, as part of the Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) programme. The project was managed by Statoil and delivered by Universal Foundation, in partnership with the Carbon Trust, Statkraft, EON and DONG Energy, in ...

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The next generation offshore wind foundation from Universal Foundation has recently completed a trial installation campaign across three major offshore wind sites in the UK North Sea, as part of the Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) programme.

The project was managed by Statoil and delivered by Universal Foundation, in partnership with the Carbon Trust, Statkraft, EON and DONG Energy, in close co-operation with Aalborg University. It also received funding from EUDP, the Danish Energy Agency.

The trial installation was conducted to run a series of tests with a scaled down Universal Foundation design, as well as a “standard” suction anchor for benchmarking and referencing. It focused on penetration ability, verticality, water injection impact on soil plug, forces and stress in skirt structure and internal soil levelling capability. Installation was completed across a range of challenging soil conditions including soft clay,moraine clay, boulder bank clay – with sand spikes and layers, clay crust, sand and silt.

Fred. Olsen Windcarrier’s installation vessel Brave Tern departed from Frederikshavn on the 5th September 2014 to mark the start of the campaign. On deck were two suction foundation structures – one Universal Foundation structure measuring 8m in diameter with a 6m skirt and a reference structure of 4m diameter with 6m skirt. Within the 24-day campaign, 28 suction installations were achieved between the two structures.

“We are delighted with the progress of the project and now follows an equally important period of data analysis with results expected early 2015 to conclude the project”, said Lars Kjuul Kristensen, project manager from Universal Foundation.

“The structures were successfully installed and retrieved in some of the most challenging soil conditions experienced by the participating developers. The Universal Foundation bucket achieved full penetration with 0.1 degree inclination or less, and the functionality of the internal top soil levelling system has been proven. This marks a major step forward in the de-risking of suction technology.”

It marks a milestone in the development of the Universal Foundation and follows on from last year’s successful installation at Dogger Bank, a major Round 3 offshore wind site, where Universal Foundations support two meteorological masts. In addition, an offshore met mast foundation was installed at Horns Rev 2 in Denmark in 2009 and a 3MW turbine on a Universal Foundation has been fully operational in Frederikshavn for 12 years.

Otto Jermiin Nielsen, CEO of Universal Foundation in Denmark said, “The collaboration among the parties involved in this project was extraordinary. Through the Carbon Trust Offshore Wind Accelerator we were able to bring together the right industry players to make the trials happen, and the involvement of Aalborg University made the project set up truly unique. The ability to bring commercial and scientific interests together is the trademark of this project. The results will impact the wind industry for years to come and will be the basis for further important research.”

Jan Matthiesen, Director of Innovation at the Carbon Trust commented, “The results from this latest trial further establish Universal Foundation suction bucket as a promising structure that could be a real game changer for the industry. We have backed the design, along with our partners in the Offshore Wind Accelerator ever since it was shortlisted from the Foundation competition in 2009. We have seen it go from concept through to a detailed de-risking process and now pleased to support this critical phase of installation testing. Universal Foundation will achieve critical cost reduction and has proven it can deliver on a number of key aspects including elimination of noise, faster, easier installation, and now has achieved a big leap forward by demonstrating it can be installed successfully in testing soil conditions.”

“We are very pleased to have completed the test-program of the suction bucket trial installation project and to be able to capture valuable experience and gathered essential data for various types of soil conditions in the North Sea. We are looking forward to a thorough analysis of the results and consider these tests an important step of bringing cost effective foundation technologies further to commercial use in our future projects”, says Jan-Fredrik Stadaas, project lead and technology manager for Offshore Wind in Statoil.

Universal Foundation’s ‘suction bucket’ was one of four novel low cost foundation designs that were shortlisted following an international competition run by the Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator in 2009 to discover world leading innovation in this area.

Further findings from the trial installation project will be published in due course.

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11th June 2014 £6.5M trial of new low cost offshore wind foundation to commence this summer

Low cost foundations could cut energy costs by 10% over next decade The Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) is joining forces with Statoil, Statkraft, EON, DONG Energy and Universal Foundation, in close co-operation with Aalborg University, to undertake installation trials of the Universal Foundation ‘suction bucket’ offshore wind foundation. Such innovative foundation designs alone have the potential to reduce the ...

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Low cost foundations could cut energy costs by 10% over next decade

The Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) is joining forces with Statoil, Statkraft, EON, DONG Energy and Universal Foundation, in close co-operation with Aalborg University, to undertake installation trials of the Universal Foundation ‘suction bucket’ offshore wind foundation. Such innovative foundation designs alone have the potential to reduce the capital costs of offshore wind energy by up to £1bn over the next decade and reduce the cost of energy from offshore wind farms by 10%.

The £6.5m joint industry trial will be executed in Q3 this year, and will see installation of the Universal Foundation ‘suction bucket’ together with a reference bucket at a number of different locations at the sites of three planned major offshore wind farms in the North Sea. The foundations will be installed at each site, then withdrawn and moved onto the next site for testing. The Carbon Trust has estimated that new lower cost foundations could save developers up to a billion pounds on the basis of new foundation designs driving a 10% reduction in the cost of energy from 2,500 offshore wind turbines expected to be deployed over the next decade.

Commenting on the trial Jan Matthiesen, Director of the Carbon Trust’s OWA said: “The ‘suction bucket’ foundation is a really great innovation for the industry as you can install it faster and at lower costs than conventional steel foundations. That is good for developers and for consumers as it means it brings down the cost of offshore wind energy. This trial is critical as it will determine the extent to which it can be applied for future offshore wind projects.”

Jan-Fredrik Stadaas, Technology Manager for Offshore Wind in Statoil said:

“This is an important industry project, demonstrating cost reduction through industry collaboration and partnering. It represents also a de-risking activity, moving technology further and securing future cost reductions in the offshore wind market. We hope to see results from this project benefit the whole offshore wind industry, especially in the UK market.”

Universal Foundation has teamed up with Fred. Olsen Windcarrier to perform the trials at sites with differing soil conditions to determine the potential range of use for the new foundation which is quicker to install and requires less steel than conventional monopile foundations.

Universal Foundation’s ‘suction bucket’ was one of four novel low cost foundation designs that were shortlisted following an international competition run by the Carbon Trust in 2009 to discover world leading innovation in this area. Two Universal Foundation ‘suction buckets’ are currently installed at Dogger Bank, a Round 3 offshore wind site, where they support two meteorological masts. In addition, an offshore met. mast foundation was installed in Denmark in 2009 and a 3MW turbine on a Universal Foundation has been fully operational in Frederikshavn since 2002.

Torgeir Ramstad of Universal Foundation said:

“We are very pleased to be working jointly with key stakeholders to demonstrate the potential of this unique technology, which we believe will bring substantial cost reductions to future offshore wind farms. Not only are we able to install in a wide range of soil conditions, carrying the largest turbines in deeper waters, we can accomplish installation of turbines immediately following foundation installation thus entering the production phase much faster – These are just a few of the key benefits of our value proposition.”

Source: www.windcarrier.com/6-5m-trial-of-new-low-cost-offshore-wind-foundation-to-commence-this-summer

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6th March 2014 Industry experts gather to discuss the future generation of offshore wind foundations

Nearly 100 international delegates congregated in Hamburg last week for the first technical conference led by Universal Foundation, focused on knowledge sharing for offshore wind suction bucket foundation technology. The technical workshop brought together industry specialists, developers, turbine suppliers, certifiers and approval bodies, engineering, fabrication and installation contractors, authorities as well as academic experts to discuss and share experiences in an ...

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Nearly 100 international delegates congregated in Hamburg last week for the first technical conference led by Universal Foundation, focused on knowledge sharing for offshore wind suction bucket foundation technology.

The technical workshop brought together industry specialists, developers, turbine suppliers, certifiers and approval bodies, engineering, fabrication and installation contractors, authorities as well as academic experts to discuss and share experiences in an open forum and reflect on lessons learnt in the evolving offshore wind sector as well as experiences that can be taken from the well-established oil and gas sector.

“The workshop was designed to encourage open sharing which is something we firmly believe that we should be doing more of as an industry,” said Torgeir Ramstad, Managing Director of Universal Foundation Norway. “The industry must find new ways of working together if we are to reach the required cost reductions, which are essential for ensuring a sustainable industry and to address the increased technical challenges with turbines being installed further offshore in deeper waters.”

The Universal Foundation technology is an innovative application of suction bucket technology learned from over 30 years of experience in the oil and gas sector. The technology is a hybrid design combining the benefits of a suction anchor, monopod and gravity based foundation once installed.

Delegates heard from Tor Inge Tjelta, Geotechnical Specialist from Statoil, regarding their vast experience with suction bucket technology dating back to the 1980s and many delegates were surprised to hear that more suction buckets of different kinds have been installed globally, than monopiles in the offshore wind industry.

“The basic concept behind Universal Foundation is not new technology, the innovation is in its application to offshore wind foundations and the controlled installation system which ensures that the turbine can achieve true verticality, eliminating the requirement for a separate transition piece with challenging grouted connections, and reducing the number of marine operations,” said Otto J. Nielsen, Managing Director of Universal Foundation (DK).

The foundation technology is already proven, with two foundations installed last year for met masts on Dogger Bank in the UK, as well as a near shore turbine demonstrator installed in Frederikshavn in Denmark in 2002 and another met mast installation at Horns Rev in Denmark in 2009.

The Carbon Trust, together with industry partners Statoil, Statkraft, E.ON and DONG are supporting the next steps to commercialisation of this next generation of WTG foundation, with the trial installation demonstration project which will test the installation of a Universal Foundation suction bucket at a number of sites in the North Sea; proving the technology in a wide range of seabed conditions and also demonstrating the noise free installation and reverse installation procedure, which allows for complete removal of the foundation.

According to a presentation made by RWE Innogy, the Universal Foundation is seen as the most mature technology of all deeper water foundation concepts. The engineering house Grontmij added that according to results from a large rotor study, the Universal Foundation is well suited for the world’s largest turbines in water depths from 25-55m.w.d.

The next major step for Universal Foundation is to secure a full scale demonstrator site for a large turbine in deep waters. This is a challenge facing the whole industry right now and Universal Foundation urge developers, turbine manufacturers and governments to support technology innovation and open up opportunities for test sites if we are going to reach set cost reduction targets.

The two day event held at the Radison Blu Hotel in Hamburg was an invaluable learning opportunity for all involved and is something which Universal Foundation is keen to repeat in due course.

Photo caption: Suction technology demonstration by Tor Inge Tjelta from Staoil.

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4th December 2013 Second Met Mast Erected at Dogger Bank

Fred. Olsen Windcarrier’s jack-up vessel Brave Tern erected the second of two planned meteorological masts at Forewind’s Dogger Bank using Universal Foundation’s innovative suction installed Bucket Foundation and a “human free” technique for the steel tower placement. The latest mast to be installed – Dogger Bank Met Mast West – will provide essential wind, wave and other weather information, as well ...

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Fred. Olsen Windcarrier’s jack-up vessel Brave Tern erected the second of two planned meteorological masts at Forewind’s Dogger Bank using Universal Foundation’s innovative suction installed Bucket Foundation and a “human free” technique for the steel tower placement.

The latest mast to be installed – Dogger Bank Met Mast West – will provide essential wind, wave and other weather information, as well as marine traffic data for the Dogger Bank offshore wind energy development. It is located approximately 150 kilometres from the UK coast.

Installed by Fred. Olsen United utilising the 132m jack-up vessel Brave Tern, the operation was completed smoothly and without any accidents or injuries.

The foundation, designed by Universal Foundation, was installed by applying suction in the bucket, to pull it into the seabed. Hundreds of water jets integral to the base steered the foundation to keep it level during its installation. Next the 93-metre lattice tower was manoeuvred into place using a “human free” technique employing guide cones, and therefore enabling the crew to stay on deck and avoid lifting hazards.

Forewind General Manager Lee Clarke said the use of a new foundation technology combined with the safer installation technique shows how the growing offshore wind industry provides companies and contractors with the scope to put new ideas into practice for the benefit of all.

“The scale and scope of the Round 3 projects like Dogger Bank will continue to provide ongoing opportunities to introduce innovative technological advances and improved methods that will help reduce costs and improve efficiencies industry-wide,” Dr Clarke said.

The foundation was constructed at Harland and Wolff’s facility in Belfast and Project Manager Ken Hawkins said they were delighted that that it was installed exactly as intended.

“We are investing heavily in new facilities and equipment to ensure we can continue to drive down costs while enhancing our capacity and the quality of the product,” he said.

The Forewind project was supported by the Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator programme, which takes the best concepts for offshore wind turbine foundations from design to deployment.

“This is great news,” said the Carbon Trust’s Associate Director, Innovation, Phil de Villiers.

“Novel foundations being developed through the Offshore Wind Accelerator programme are essential to rapidly reduce the capital costs of the next large-scale offshore wind farms.”

“The successful deployment of the second Bucket Foundation at Dogger Bank is a major step in giving offshore wind developers more options as they look to select components for future Round 3 projects.”

Dogger Bank Met Mast West will now be set-up and commissioned and it is expected to be fully operational by the end of September.

View video footage of the installation on the Forewind website.The video can be found on the second slide on the homepage.

Source: http://www.windcarrier.com/second-met-mast-erected-at-dogger-bank

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25th September 2013 Second meteorological mast installed at Dogger Bank

Offshore wind developer Forewind’s second of two planned meteorological masts erected at Dogger Bank using innovative suction installed Bucket Foundation and “human free” technique for the steel tower placement. Offshore wind developer Forewind’s second of two planned meteorological masts was erected at Dogger Bank during the weekend using the innovative suction installed Bucket Foundation and a “human free” technique for the ...

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Offshore wind developer Forewind’s second of two planned meteorological masts erected at Dogger Bank using innovative suction installed Bucket Foundation and “human free” technique for the steel tower placement.

Offshore wind developer Forewind’s second of two planned meteorological masts was erected at Dogger Bank during the weekend using the innovative suction installed Bucket Foundation and a “human free” technique for the steel tower placement. 

The latest mast to be installed – Dogger Bank Met Mast West – will provide essential wind, wave and other weather information, as well as marine traffic data for the Dogger Bank offshore wind energy development. It is located approximately 150 kilometres from the UK coast.

Installed by Fred. Olsen United utilising the 132m jack-up vessel Brave Tern, the operation was completed smoothly and without any accidents or injuries. 

The foundation, designed by Universal Foundation, was installed by applying suction in the bucket, to pull it into the seabed. Hundreds of water jets integral to the base steered the foundation to keep it level during its installation. Next the 93-metre lattice tower was manoeuvred into place using a “human free” technique employing guide cones, and therefore enabling the crew to stay on deck and avoid lifting hazards.

Forewind General Manager Lee Clarke said the use of a new foundation technology combined with the safer installation technique shows how the growing offshore wind industry provides companies and contractors with the scope to put new ideas into practice for the benefit of all. 

“The scale and scope of the Round 3 projects like Dogger Bank will continue to provide ongoing opportunities to introduce innovative technological advances and improved methods that will help reduce costs and improve efficiencies industry-wide,” Dr Clarke said.

The foundation was constructed at Harland and Wolff’s facility in Belfast and Project Manager Ken Hawkins said they were delighted that that it was installed exactly as intended.

“We are investing heavily in new facilities and equipment to ensure we can continue to drive down costs while enhancing our capacity and the quality of the product,” he said.

The Forewind project was supported by the Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator programme, which takes the best concepts for offshore wind turbine foundations from design to deployment.

“This is great news,” said the Carbon Trust’s Head of Offshore Wind, Phil de Villiers.

“Novel foundations being developed through the Offshore Wind Accelerator programme are essential to rapidly reduce the capital costs of the next large-scale offshore wind farms.”

“The successful deployment of the second Bucket Foundation at Dogger Bank is a major step in giving offshore wind developers more options as they look to select components for future Round 3 projects.”

Dogger Bank Met Mast West will now be set-up and commissioned and it is expected to be fully operational by the end of September.

Source: http://www.carbontrust.com/about-us/press/2013/09/second-meteorological-mast-installed-at-dogger-bank

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24th September 2013 Second meteorological mast installed at Dogger Bank

Forewind’s second of two planned meteorological masts was erected at Dogger Bank during the weekend using the innovative suction installed Bucket Foundation and a “human free” technique for the steel tower placement. The latest mast to be installed – Dogger Bank Met Mast West – will provide essential wind, wave and other weather information, as well as marine traffic data for ...

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Forewind’s second of two planned meteorological masts was erected at Dogger Bank during the weekend using the innovative suction installed Bucket Foundation and a “human free” technique for the steel tower placement.

The latest mast to be installed – Dogger Bank Met Mast West – will provide essential wind, wave and other weather information, as well as marine traffic data for the Dogger Bank offshore wind energy development. It is located approximately 150 kilometres from the UK coast.

Installed by Fred. Olsen United utilising the 132m jack-up vessel Brave Tern, the operation was completed smoothly and without any accidents or injuries.

The foundation, designed by Universal Foundation, was installed by applying suction in the bucket, to pull it into the seabed. Hundreds of water jets integral to the base steered the foundation to keep it level during its installation. Next the 93-metre lattice tower was manoeuvred into place using a “human free” technique employing guide cones, and therefore enabling the crew to stay on deck and avoid lifting hazards.

Forewind General Manager Lee Clarke said the use of a new foundation technology combined with the safer installation technique shows how the growing offshore wind industry provides companies and contractors with the scope to put new ideas into practice for the benefit of all.

“The scale and scope of the Round 3 projects like Dogger Bank will continue to provide ongoing opportunities to introduce innovative technological advances and improved methods that will help reduce costs and improve efficiencies industry-wide,” Dr Clarke said.

The foundation was constructed at Harland and Wolff’s facility in Belfast and Project Manager Ken Hawkins said they were delighted that that it was installed exactly as intended.

“We are investing heavily in new facilities and equipment to ensure we can continue to drive down costs while enhancing our capacity and the quality of the product,” he said.

The Forewind project was supported by the Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator programme, which takes the best concepts for offshore wind turbine foundations from design to deployment.

“This is great news,” said the Carbon Trust’s Associate Director, Innovation, Phil de Villiers. “Novel foundations being developed through the Offshore Wind Accelerator programme are essential to rapidly reduce the capital costs of the next large-scale offshore wind farms.

“The successful deployment of the second Bucket Foundation at Dogger Bank is a major step in giving offshore wind developers more options as they look to select components for future Round 3 projects.”

Dogger Bank Met Mast West will now be set-up and commissioned and it is expected to be fully operational by the end of September.

Source: http://www.forewind.co.uk/news/84/34/Second-meteorological-mast-installed-at-Dogger-Bank.html

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1st September 2013 Bucket foundation may cut wind turbine costs

Suction piles have anchored offshore oil and gas production for years, but a new type – called a bucket foundation – is being promoted for offshore wind turbines in an effort to reduce costs. In February, Forewind, a consortium planning a huge turbine farm in the North Sea, started testing the bucket foundation system, using it for a meteorological station at ...

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Suction piles have anchored offshore oil and gas production for years, but a new type – called a bucket foundation – is being promoted for offshore wind turbines in an effort to reduce costs.

In February, Forewind, a consortium planning a huge turbine farm in the North Sea, started testing the bucket foundation system, using it for a meteorological station at Dogger Bank site where the farm is to be built. Universal Foundation, a Danish affiliate of Fred. Olsen of Norway, originated, designed and patented the new foundation type. Harland & Wolff of Belfast is the manufacturer.

Universal’s bucket is one of four innovative foundations being pushed by the UK Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator research and development program, which aims to cut offshore turbine construction costs and make wind power more competitive.

The other three OWA-endorsed designs are a tri-bucket system from SPT Offshore, a twisted jacket from Keystone Engineering, and a gravity base from GBF. All four, including Universal’s bucket foundation, aim to cut costs by simplifying installation.

The Universal design is the closest of the three in appearance to a monopile, although it has a much wider base. It amounts to a giant upside-down bucket with a shaft rising from the center of its upturned bottom.

The shaft extends above the water and is topped by a distinctive integrated transition piece onto which a wind turbine or other topside structure can be installed. Usually, adding the transition structure is a separate step, Universal says.

Universal says the bucket foundation can work in waters out to 50m deep, the relative shallow water depth at which most of the world’s wind turbines are installed.

Like traditional suction piles used in the oil and gas industry, the bucket foundation fills with water when placed into the sea at the start of installation. Pumps then suck out the water, creating a pressure gradient that, along with the structure’s weight, pushes it into the seabed, like a cookie cutter slicing into dough.

Unlike suction piles, the bucket foundation’s skirt has controllable, water-emitting jets or nozzles lining the lip where the skirt cuts into the seabed. Varying the force of water shooting from the jets into the seabed helps ease the bucket into place in a level orientation.

“The rim of the skirt is equipped with a unique system for distribution of water pressure,” says Soren Nielsen, Universal’s technology director. “The bucket structure will, by these means, be steered vertically, allowing precise location within the inclination tolerances.”

Using this approach, the monopilelike structure extending above the water ends up almost perfectly vertical, without grouting or other subsea work. The typical wind turbine inclination limit is 0.25°. Universal can achieve installation within 0.1 degree of vertical, promoters say.

As for stability and strength after installation, the bucket foundation can resist the large forces exerted on it by wind and waves and remains in place because it combines the benefits of a gravity structure and a monopile, Nielsen says. The design also prevents scour, avoiding the need for anti-scouring measures.

“The stability of the foundation is ensured by a combination of earth pressures on the skirt and the vertical capacity of the foundation,” he says.

There have been questions about the bucket foundation: Installation in seabed that is too rocky presents challenges; manufacture requires a lot of welding; delivery and installation methods remain to be perfected.

Universal has answers for all of the questions: If installers encounter unexpected rocks, the bucket foundation is easy to shift slightly; the relative shallowness of its penetration into the seabed, compared with traditional suction piles, also helps when installing in potentially problematic seabed.

As for the welding in manufacturing, promoters say it is a benefit because it enables the cost savings associated with unitization.

As for hauling and installation, existing jackup vessels have the capability needed for delivery, and other hauling options are being studied for larger projects; installation has been proven at Dogger Bank and will be optimized in future projects, Universal says. But the bucket foundation has to do more than work effectively to be competitive. It has to cost less.

The Carbon Trust’s head of offshore wind, Phil de Villiers, warned a recent UK conference that offshore wind power development could stall without more powerful turbines, lower-cost foundations and full-scale demonstrations that the technology can be cost effective.

Cost is clearly an issue; especially with offshore turbines costing as much as four times onshore turbines, in the range of £3-4 million per MW of capacity.

Universal is happy to talk about cost. They estimate the design can shave 30% off the cost of traditional subsea foundations (the old-style monopoles, jackets and gravity bases).

First, the bucket foundation is much lighter. It uses less steel. “Compared to monopiles, we expect to demonstrate a 25-30% reduction in weight,” says Universal spokeswoman Michelle Maria Langkilde.

With the transition piece already attached, installation requires fewer steps. Importantly, the design avoids the grouted connection that can lead to future problems.

“The traditional foundation relies on a grouted connection, and in recent years, failing grout connections have gained the attention of industry experts and could result in huge upgrade investments for already operational wind farms,” Langkilde says.

Universal points to the bucket’s comparative ease of decommissioning and removal, which allows it to be reused or recycled, cutting costs even more.

Complete removability also is an environmental benefit. When a site is decommissioned, pulling the bucket completely out returns the seabed to its prior condition. Traditional monopoles often are cut off at the seabed with their bottoms left embedded.

Promoters also tout the lower environmental impact of installation. Unlike conventional foundations, Universal’s requires neither pile drivers nor vibration machines that disturb marine life. Two other Universal bucket foundations have been installed; one in 2002 to support a 3-MW demonstrator turbine at Frederickshavn (harbor), Denmark, and a second in 2009, to carry a meteorological station at the Horns Rev 2 wind turbine site, also in Danish waters.

Two other bucket foundations are under contract for met stations; one at Dogger Bank, and for the Seagreen turbine site in Scotland’s Firth of Forth, Langkilde says.

It is too early to say which foundations will be used for the wind turbines at Dogger Bank as that decision will be made by the lead operators of the various parts of the sprawling development, a Forewind spokeswoman says.

But Forewind General Manager Lee Clarke notes the bucket’s advantages, saying that it was chosen for two met masts because it uses less steel than conventional piled foundations and its design removes the need for pile driving, seabed preparations, scour protection and a transition piece.

“We have taken our requirements for met masts to look beyond the standard approach and instead use the opportunity to demonstrate a new, and potentially very exciting, technology with possible benefits well beyond just the Dogger Bank development,” he says.

Source: http://www.oedigital.com/regions/arctic/item/3845-bucket-foundation-may-cut-wind-turbine-costs

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14th June 2013 Lack of foundation test sites ‘a risk for UK offshore wind’

The Carbon Trust has warned that innovations to reduce offshore wind costs are at risk as Britain has nowhere to demonstrate new, lower-cost foundations with more powerful offshore wind turbines. Carbon Trust believes that without an urgent solution many cost saving innovations won’t be available in time for the rollout of Round 3 projects, which are expected to deliver up to ...

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The Carbon Trust has warned that innovations to reduce offshore wind costs are at risk as Britain has nowhere to demonstrate new, lower-cost foundations with more powerful offshore wind turbines.

Carbon Trust believes that without an urgent solution many cost saving innovations won’t be available in time for the rollout of Round 3 projects, which are expected to deliver up to 18GW of new generating capacity by 2020.

According to Carbon Trust, the cost of offshore wind energy is currently around £140 to £150/MWh. With innovation and cost reduction in a number of key areas, such as new foundations, the Carbon Trust has shown that costs can be reduced to around £100/MWh. The organisation warns that this level of cost reduction won’t happen unless new innovations are properly tested in situ to provide developers and financiers with technical assurance before undertaking major multi-billion pound procurement programmes.

The foundations of an offshore wind farm currently account for about 30 per cent of the typical wind farm costs, so improving their designs and reducing their installation costs can have a material impact on cutting the overall cost of energy generation.

The Carbon Trust, through its Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA), is backing four new foundation designs that include the Universal Foundation, which can be installed without piling as it uses a giant suction bucket to bury the steel structure into the seabed, and the Keystone twisted jacket structure, which uses less steel than traditional foundations.

Prototypes of the Keystone and Universal Foundation designs have already been installed in UK waters, at the Hornsea and Dogger Bank Round 3 zones in the North Sea. They have been fitted with meteorological masts.  The next important step is to demonstrate the new foundations with 130 meter high wind turbines on top.  The lack of demonstration sites puts this important next step at risk.

In a statement, Phil de Villiers, the head of Offshore wind at the Carbon Trust said, ‘At present we have a Catch 22.  We have the technology but we have no way of proving that it can work at scale because we currently have no suitable offshore demonstration sites in the UK ready to use.

‘The bottom line is that unless we sort this issue out in the next few months we could be putting at risk the mass rollout of major new cost saving technologies which, in turn, can help reduce the overall offshore wind build bill by billions of pounds.

‘We have a duty to ensure we hit our carbon targets at the least cost possible, so it’s in everyone’s interest, including the government, the industry and consumers, to fix this problem and fix it fast.’

Source: http://www.theengineer.co.uk/civil-and-structural/news/lack-of-foundation-test-sites-a-risk-for-uk-offshore-wind/1016509.article#ixzz30NX4hwxN

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12th June 2013 Carbon Trust warns time is running out to test important cost-saving technology for offshore wind

Carbon Trust will today issue a warning to the offshore wind industry that important new innovations to slash the cost of offshore wind power are at risk of remaining on the drawing board as the UK currently has nowhere to demonstrate new lower-cost foundations with more powerful offshore wind turbines. Carbon Trust will today issue a warning to the offshore wind ...

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Carbon Trust will today issue a warning to the offshore wind industry that important new innovations to slash the cost of offshore wind power are at risk of remaining on the drawing board as the UK currently has nowhere to demonstrate new lower-cost foundations with more powerful offshore wind turbines.

Carbon Trust will today issue a warning to the offshore wind industry that important new innovations to slash the cost of offshore wind power are at risk of remaining on the drawing board as the UK currently has nowhere to demonstrate new lower-cost foundations with more powerful offshore wind turbines.

The issue has become so critical that the Carbon Trust believes that without an urgent solution many of these new cost saving innovations won’t be available in time for the major rollout of Round 3 projects, which are expected to deliver up to 18GW of new generating capacity by 2020.

The cost of offshore wind energy is currently around £140 to £150/MWh. With innovation and cost reduction in a number of key areas, such as new foundations, the Carbon Trust has shown that costs can be reduced by up to a third; down to around £100/MWh.  This level of cost reduction won’t happen unless new innovations are properly tested in situ to provide developers and financiers with technical assurance before undertaking major multi-billion pound procurement programmes.

The foundations of an offshore wind farm currently account for about 30 per cent of the typical wind farm costs, so improving their designs and reducing their installation costs can have a material impact on cutting the overall cost of energy generation. The Carbon Trust, through its Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA), is backing four new foundation designs. They include the Universal Foundation, which can be installed without piling as it uses a giant suction bucket to bury the steel structure into the seabed, and the Keystone twisted jacket structure, which uses less steel than traditional foundations, thus reducing cost.

Prototypes of the Keystone and Universal Foundation designs have already been installedin UK waters, at the Hornsea and Dogger Bank Round 3 zones in the North Sea. They have been fitted with meteorological masts.  The next important step is to demonstrate the new foundations with state-of-the-art 130 meter high wind turbines on top.  The lack of demonstration sites puts this important next step at risk.

Phil de Villiers, the Head of Offshore wind at the Carbon Trust, speaking at the wind industry’s Offshore Wind 2013 conference in Manchester said:

“At present we have a Catch 22.  We have the technology but we have no way of proving that it can work at scale because we currently have no suitable offshore demonstration sites in the UK ready to use.  The bottom line is that unless we sort this issue out in the next few months we could be putting at risk the mass rollout of major new cost saving technologies which, in turn, can help reduce the overall offshore wind build bill by billions of pounds.  We have a duty to ensure we hit our carbon targets at the least cost possible, so it’s in everyone’s interest, including the government, the industry and consumers, to fix this problem and fix it fast.”

Source: http://www.carbontrust.com/about-us/press/2013/06/carbon-trust-warns-time-is-running-out-to-test-important-cost-saving-technology-for-offshore-wind

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29th April 2013 Brug bøtten og spar kassen – ny opfindelse skal sænke prisen på havmøller

En professor fra Aalborg Universitet og en Aalborg virksomhed står bag en revolutionerende opfindelse, der skal spare de store omkostninger til havmøllers fundament. Opfindelsen, et såkaldt bøttefundament, vil kunne give vindmølleindustrien milliardbesparelser, skabe nye danske arbejdspladser og samtidig skåne miljøet i forhold til eksisterende løsninger. Højteknologifonden investerer 15 millioner kroner i projektet. Tag et tonstungt jernfundament til en havvindmølle, send det ...

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En professor fra Aalborg Universitet og en Aalborg virksomhed står bag en revolutionerende opfindelse, der skal spare de store omkostninger til havmøllers fundament. Opfindelsen, et såkaldt bøttefundament, vil kunne give vindmølleindustrien milliardbesparelser, skabe nye danske arbejdspladser og samtidig skåne miljøet i forhold til eksisterende løsninger. Højteknologifonden investerer 15 millioner kroner i projektet.

Tag et tonstungt jernfundament til en havvindmølle, send det ned på bunden af havet og få det til at suge sig fast i havbunden: det virker måske som noget, der kun vil fungere i et Anders And-blad. Men det er realistisk i den virkelige verden: metoden er afprøvet, og den virker.

Næste skridt er at gøre produktet THE BUCKET FOUNDATION, et såkaldt bøttefundament, klar til industriel masseproduktion.

Undersøgelser fra Carbon Trust Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) viser, at omkostninger til fundamenter i en havvindmøllepark kan reduceres med op til 30 procent, hvis man bruger bøttefundamenter. Fundamenterne kan tilpasses forskellige jordbundsforhold og vil dermed være anvendelige i 80-90 procent af vindemølleparkerne i Nordeuropa. Derfor vil The Bucket Foundation være særdeles interessant for vindmølleindustrien.

”Masseproduktion af bøttefundamenter i Danmark har stort potentiale og vil skabe mange nye danske arbejdspladser,” siger professor Lars Bo Ibsen fra Aalborg Universitet, som har deltaget aktivt i udviklingen.

Udviklingen foregår i et tæt samarbejde mellem Aalborg Universitet og virksomheden Universal Foundation, og de næste to-tre år vil de og projektets øvrige partnere arbejde tæt sammen om den højteknologiske proces, der skal gøre det muligt at fabriksproducere bøttefundamenterne. Ligesom på en bilfabrik skal elementerne designes, skæres, svejses og transporteres i et automatiseret flow, der gør produktionen rentabel.

Parterne forventer, at projektet vil styrke virksomhedernes markedsposition betydeligt og skabe værdi til det danske samfund. Og det er store værdier, der er på spil. Markedspotentialet for havmøllefundamenter forventes at udgøre 35 milliarder euro, og det er vel at mærke kun for det europæiske marked frem til 2020. Allerede nu ringer Universal Foundations telefoner hyppigere end før.

”Vi oplever interesse fra flere steder i verden. Men især for Tyskland og England er The Bucket Foundation et særligt konkurrencedygtigt alternativ på grund af dets miljømæssige fordele. Teknologien gør det muligt at installere og afinstallere fundamentet med en særlig sugeteknik. Det betyder, at støjgener for havdyr holdes på et absolut minimum, og at hele fundamentet kan fjernes og genbruges,” forklarer teknisk direktør i Universal Foundation, Søren A. Nielsen.

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22nd February 2013 Innovative Foundations Installed at Potential Site of Large Offshore Wind Farm

One of the world’s largest offshore wind farms came a step closer to reality in recent weeks as suction-installed foundations for the project left their Irish shipyard to begin their journey to the site of the Dogger Bank wind farm, 125 kilometres off the UK’s east coast. The structures, known as bucket foundations, can reduce costs as there is no need ...

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One of the world’s largest offshore wind farms came a step closer to reality in recent weeks as suction-installed foundations for the project left their Irish shipyard to begin their journey to the site of the Dogger Bank wind farm, 125 kilometres off the UK’s east coast.

The structures, known as bucket foundations, can reduce costs as there is no need for transition piece costs or additional grouting as would be the case for more traditional foundations.

They are literally gigantic steel buckets that will sink solidly into the sea floor using a suction method and jetting systems, as opposed to floating or more conventional monopole, jacket or tripod foundations which are generally tethered to the seabed.

The structures will support two meteorological masts that will provide weather information that is essential for assessing available wind capacity. The met masts are set to be installed towards the end of February once the foundations are firmly in place.

The Dogger Bank project is being developed by Forewind, a consortium of RWE, SSE, Statkraft and Statoil, and with agreements already in place for the development of six wind farms, the group hopes to have up to 9.6GW of output by 2020. Ultimately the £3 billion (€3.47 billion) project could use thousands of wind turbines to generate as much as 10% of Britain’s power needs, according to the UK Carbon Trust.

The potential to produce huge amounts of electricity from offshore wind turbines is clearly there. The European Environment Agency (EEA) said in a 2009 report that offshore wind power’s economically competitive potential is around 3,400 TWh in 2030, about 80% of the EU’s projected electricity demand. Today offshore wind covers 0.5% of the EU’s electricity demand produced by a total of 5,000 MW of offshore power from 55 offshore wind farms across the continent.

Some have predicted that current high costs of developing offshore wind farms could fall by one-third by the end of the decade as experience develops and the supply chain becomes specialised. But for the moment, the extra expenses compared to onshore farms continue to pose a problem. Phil De Villiers, head of the Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) programme, said he was therefore “excited” about what the use of this new technology could mean for offshore wind development. “The foundations [of offshore turbines] represent 30% of the total cost of a wind farm [and so] reducing the capital and installation costs could really make an impact on the viability of future projects,” said De Villiers.

The foundations were developed by the Danish firm Universal Foundation through the OWA programme, which aims to take the best designs for offshore wind turbine foundations and see them through from design to deployment.

Source: http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/blog/post/2013/02/innovative-foundations-installed-at-potential-site-of-large-offshore-wind-farm

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22nd January 2013 Load-out marks first stage of development at Dogger Bank

Innovative suction-installed wind turbine foundations on their way to Dogger Bank site, for first stage of construction at the world’s largest offshore wind farm, 125 kilometres off the UK’s east coast. The innovative suction-installed foundations that represent the first stage of construction at the world’s largest offshore wind farm are now on their way to the site at Dogger Bank, 125 ...

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Innovative suction-installed wind turbine foundations on their way to Dogger Bank site, for first stage of construction at the world’s largest offshore wind farm, 125 kilometres off the UK’s east coast.

The innovative suction-installed foundations that represent the first stage of construction at the world’s largest offshore wind farm are now on their way to the site at Dogger Bank, 125 kilometres off the UK’s east coast.

The structures, known as Bucket Foundations, will support two meteorological masts that will provide essential weather information. They were developed by Danish firm Universal Foundation – a Fred. Olsen-related company – through The Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator programme, which takes the best designs for offshore wind turbine foundations from design through to deployment.

“This is the first deployment of the Bucket Foundation in UK waters,” said Phil De Villiers, head of the OWA programme. “We’re excited about what this means for offshore wind development. The foundations represent 30% of the total cost of a wind farm. Reducing the capital and installation costs could really make an impact on the viability of future projects.”

Dogger Bank is being developed by Forewind Limited – a consortium comprised of leading international energy companies RWE, SSE, Statkraft and Statoil. With agreements already in place for the development of six wind farms, the group hopes to have up to 9.6GW of output by 2020.

“This is certainly a momentous occasion for us,” said Lee Clarke, Forewind project director and general manager. “The foundations will be the first structure put in place at the Dogger Bank site. It’s a sign that this project is really beginning to take shape.”

The met masts and foundations were fabricated by Fred. Olsen-related companies under an EPCI contract between Forewind and Fred. Olsen United. They are being ferried to the site from the new Harland and Wolff fabrication plant in Belfast by Fred. Olsen Windcarrier’s 132m jack-up vessel Brave Tern. This was the inaugural job for the Brave Tern, which was built in Dubai last year.

“It’s wonderful to see the Brave Tern and its cargo underway,” said Fred. Olsen United project manager Lars Kjuul Kristensen. “We’re so pleased to be playing a vital role right at the start of this major development.”

The met masts themselves are set to be installed towards the middle of February.

Source: http://www.carbontrust.com/about-us/press/2013/01/load-out-marks-first-stage-of-development-at-dogger-bank

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22nd January 2013 ‘Suction bucket’ lays new foundation for offshore wind

Engineering solution is hoped to bring down costs and provide a basis for ambitious offshore plans. Taken from a Guardian environment article. A gigantic steel bucket will be lowered upside-down through the deep, murky waters of the North Sea within the next few days, and, through a smart engineering trick, it will sink rapidly into the sandy sediment on the sea ...

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Engineering solution is hoped to bring down costs and provide a basis for ambitious offshore plans.

Taken from a Guardian environment article.

A gigantic steel bucket will be lowered upside-down through the deep, murky waters of the North Sea within the next few days, and, through a smart engineering trick, it will sink rapidly into the sandy sediment on the sea floor. Once nestled into place, it will become stuck fast and form a rock-solid foundation for a structure towering far above the waves.

If all goes well, the technology may also provide a secure basis for the thousands of giant offshore wind turbines planned for UK waters: the most ambitious offshore wind rollout in the world, potentially providing electricity for 26m homes by 2030. The foundation could help calm the war being waged over the building of turbines in the countryside by significantly cutting the extra cost of placing them out to sea and out of sight.

“The ‘suction bucket’ foundation is a really great innovation for the industry as you can install it faster and at lower costs than conventional foundations,” said Phil de Villiers, of the Carbon Trust, which has supported its development. “That is good for everyone as it brings down costs.”

He estimates the foundation could save developers more than £5bn if used for the 6,000 turbines planned in the next decade or so, because it is 20% cheaper than conventional foundations, which make up about 30% of the £90bn total cost.

Two of the foundations, which resemble giant sink plungers, left the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast on Wednesday and will become the first deepwater deployment of the technology once planted 25 metres below the surface at Dogger Bank on Monday.

The ‘suction bucket’ foundations are loaded on to a carrier.
According to Søren Nielsen, technical director at Universal Foundation in Aalborg, Denmark, which developed the design, the secret is creating a quicksand around the rim of the 16-metre-diameter bucket, so it slips easily into the seabed. When the inverted steel bucket reaches the bottom, a pipe running up through the stem above sucks water out of the bucket. This causes water to flow into the bucket through the sediment, creating a sloppy quicksand at the rim. But when the bucket is in place, the pump is turned off, forming an extremely strong foundation.

“Trying to pull it out creates a vacuum in the bucket, like when you try to pull your foot out of wet sand on the beach,” Nielsen said.

The two foundations are the biggest infrastructure put in place by Forewind, a developer that aims to spend £24bn erecting 2,000 huge turbines on Dogger Bank, about 125 miles off the Yorkshire coast.

Mark Legerton, head of engineering at Forewind – a consortium of four major energy companies, RWE, SSE, Statoil and Statkraft – said the bucket foundation’s attraction was its cost-effectiveness. “We also think it will be generally applicable to a wide variety of sites,” he said, though Forewind is still considering alternatives. The foundations will support 120-metre meteorology masts, which will provide essential wind data for siting the turbines. They will be operational in March, with the project costing more than £10m.

Conventional foundations for offshore wind turbines are either a giant steel rod, driven into the seabed, or a steel jacket resembling an electricity pylon. Both need more steel – an expensive material – bigger, more specialised ships for deployment and are more prone to costly weather delays.

The government has placed a heavy emphasis on offshore wind turbines as part of its plan to deliver a secure, low-carbon energy supply. But reducing costs is critical, with onshore wind much cheaper at present but opposed by some communities.

De Villiers’ work focuses on developing cost-cutting technologies, including ways to prevent engineers getting seasick, and he is optimistic. “Ultimately, you should have costs that are equal to or lower than those onshore,” he said. “The advantage of offshore wind is there is a much bigger wind resource and you can have much larger turbines. Furthermore, they are now getting so big that there are constraints on what you can physically move on land, but you don’t have that problem with turbines constructed in ports and moved by ship.”

Source: http://www.regensw.co.uk/news/2013/1/24/suction-bucket-lays-new-foundation-for-offshore-wind

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