Spanish Technology Gauged for New York Offshore Wind Farm

Cobra Instalaciones y Servicios, in a consortium with Esteyco, has won a Front End Engineering Design (FEED) contract for the Empire Wind offshore wind project in New York. The Spanish companies will analyse the feasibility of a concrete gravity-based foundation for the offshore wind farm developed by oil and gas majors BP and Equinor.

Cobra and Esteyco will investigate the feasibility of using ELISA technology at the project site, located some 24-48 kilometres offshore, south east of Long Island, in water depths of between 18 and 40 metres.

ELISA, one of two offshore wind technologies developed by the two companies, has already been installed in Spain, where the prototype deployed off the island of Gran Canaria represents the country’s first offshore wind turbine and the first bottom-fixed in the south of Europe.

Esteyco and Cobra have been involved in the Empire Wind project since 2019 when an initial design project was awarded to the two companies.

Equinor and BP have also recently signed a FEED contract with Aker Solutions for the project’s foundations. The Norway-based company has been hired to study the design and delivery of concrete foundations for the wind turbines that would spin at the Empire Wind site.

Empire Wind will have around 2 GW installed capacity and is being developed in two phases.

The 816 MW Empire Wind Phase 1 was selected in New York’s first-ever offshore wind solicitation in 2019. In January 2021, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) selected the 1,260 MW Empire Wind Phase 2 as one of the winners of the state’s second offshore wind solicitation.

The offshore wind farm will feature wind turbines with a nameplate capacity of between 10 and 15 MW.

The lease for the Empire Wind area off Long Island, which covers 80,000 acres, was acquired by Equinor in 2017. At the beginning of this year, oil and gas giant BP and Equinor closed the transaction for BP’s acquisition of a 50 per cent interest in the Empire Wind and Beacon Wind projects off the U.S. east coast, marking BP’s official entry into the offshore wind market.

Photo: Esteyco/Cobra Instalaciones y Servicios