EOLINK anchored and connected its 1/10 scale 12MW floating wind turbine prototype to the French grid on 19 April.
Earlier this year, the Bretagne-based startup secured funds to install and test the floating wind turbine prototype by receiving EUR 1 million in the first round of funding from investors such as Angels Finistere, as well as private investors.
The exact test location has not been disclosed.
In October 2016, EOLINK performed tank testing of a 1:50 scale model of its floating wind turbine, which showed that the turbine can withstand very harsh sea states with low mooring lines tensions (Hs>12m) and that it always faces the wind, even in the worst case scenario: 90° misalignment between wind and waves.
The EOLINK design targets the biggest power/weight ratio in order to get the best-in-class Levelized Cost of Electricity (LCOE) and this is the first time such ratio between the swept area and the floater's size is tested, the company said.
The concept involves a set of profiled arms instead of a conventional single tower. Having a turbine mounted on a single tower induces vibrations and bending moment at the base, and with floating application this tower is no longer mandatory, EOLINK said, adding that its concept replaces the single tower by a set of thin and profiled arms, making the structure lighter and stiffer and saving on materials used, which leads to decreasing the LCOE.