Floatgen: Construction of First French Offshore Wind Turbine Kicks Off

The construction of the first wind turbine to be installed off the French coast – Floatgen – was officially launched today.

The 2MW offshore wind turbine, set to be put into operation for the first time in 2017, will feature the first full-scale demonstrator of the ring-shaped floating foundation developed and patented by Ideol and built by Bouygues Travaux Publics in Saint-Nazaire Port.

The wind turbine will be installed on the Centrale Nantes offshore test site, SEM-REV, off the coast of Le Croisic.

The aim of this project is show the commercial potential of offshore floating wind turbines. They will produce electricity from a renewable source at a significant distance from the coast, thus preserving the visual integrity of the coastline, at a reduced cost thanks to the stronger winds further offshore. It will also underscore the industrial potential of this new sector which will lead to job creation on both a local level near the installation sites, where concrete is the main foundation construction material, as well as with the main suppliers, as illustrated by the contract signed with Le Béon for the supply of the anchoring system, Ideol said.

The construction was launched at a ceremony organised on the side-lines of the annual Renewable Marine Energies conference. The contract-signing ceremony was attended by Ideol, Centrale Nantes and Bouygues Travaux Publics.

Construction will start in September in Saint-Nazaire Port, where Bouygues Travaux Publics will build the floating foundation, mobilising 80 workers on site. At the conclusion of the six-month construction phase, the wind turbine will be fixed into position, quayside, on its foundation.

The whole assembly will be subsequently towed out from the Le Croisic coast to the installation site, SEM-REV. Once on site, the wind turbine will be connected to the anchoring system and the electricity export cable.

The Floatgen project is backed by a European consortium of seven companies and research bodies.

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