SeaTwirl, Unitech Offshore and Novaton Erneuebare Energien have signed a Letter of Intent to offer hybrid offshore wind and solar power solutions to islands, remote seaside villages, fish farms and desalination plants, which will also give a boost to SeaTwirl in reaching its main target of making its floating wind technology part of the future floating wind market.
The Swedish floating wind turbine developer says that utilising its 1MW platform for smaller applications will enable the company to reach the large floating wind market in the future more quickly with larger turbines.
"Our main target is still to take a leading position on the, in the future, very large market for floating wind power, but on our way there, we want to get the most out of the development work that we are doing. That’s why we find this opportunity, where we take our 1 MW turbine and offer it as a part of a hybrid solution for niche markets, so exciting," SeaTwirl’s CEO Gabriel Strängberg said.
The company expects to launch its 1MW floating wind turbine in 2020 and then profit from placing its technology on aforementioned markets, prior to the large-scale deployment of its turbines.
SeaTwirl has now identified markets where wind turbines of the size of 1 MW can meet a clear market demand and sees a possibility to build a business aimed at these niche markets in parallel with its main target. That can mean revenues for the company sooner than was originally planned.
Since the identified niche markets currently run mainly on electricity from diesel generators, the three partners plan on providing renewable energy solutions by combining their expertise, with Norwegian Unitech bringing in its knowledge of a subsea infrastructure supplier for the offshore oil & gas industry and Swiss Novaton that of a developer of floating islands for solar panels.
To remind, SeaTwirl recently entered into a strategic partnership with Siemens focused on the technical parts of its floating offshore wind turbine, which represents an important step towards launching the 1MW SeaTwirl S2 floating turbine in 2020, according to SeaTwirl. Shortly after, the Swedish company announced it had commenced a research project in collaboration with Chalmers and RISE (Research Institutes of Sweden) to investigate how to best design vertical axis wind turbines (VAWTs) to be as robust as possible.