Hywind Scotland: Floating Wind power plant, the first in the world

The potential of renewable energy in some countries started to be utilized optimally. China, USA and India is the country's most cutting-edge in utilizing renewable energy sources such as solar energy, wind, and water. In addition to these three countries, European countries such as the United Kingdom (the UK includes four countries namely United Kingdom, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland), Germany and the Netherlands took part in a race to increase the use of renewable energy as an energy source electricity. In the report "Wind Energy in Europe: Outlook to 2020", European countries are planning to build a wind power plant on land (onshore) and offshore (offshore). The total installed power generation capacity of wind power in Germany until the year 2017 is 2.9 Gigawatt (GW) consisting of 2.3 GW GW 0.6 on land and offshore. The UK ranks second with a total installed capacity of 1.7 GW consisting of 1.2 GW on land and 0.5 GW of offshore [1].

Figure 1. The construction of a wind power plant in Europe [1]

In October 2017, the origin of the oil company Statoil, Norway, teamed up with Masdar (Uae companies) have built floating wind power plant, the first in the world. The power plant is located in the North Sea (North Sea) of Scotland, which is 15 miles from the coast of Petershead. This wind turbine development project called Hywind Scotland. A floating wind turbine development takes a long time and the confidence of various parties to prove that these turbines can work optimally.

In 2001, the engineers began to pour their ideas to make a floating wind turbine. To test their idea, then in 2009 they started making a floating wind turbine prototypes being tested off the coast of Norway Karmoy [2]. The capacity of 2.3 MW prototype with a long blade 85 meters. In the year 2015, the Scottish Government support and fund projects a floating wind turbine developed by Statoil company that will stand resplendent in the Ocean North of Scotland. The average wind speed in the North Sea is 10 m/s and 1.8 metre high waves [3].

Figure 2. (a) the location of the Hywind Scotland [4] (b) Illustration Hywind Scotland which has a total height of 253 m [3] (c) the design of a floating wind turbine [3]

Hywind Scotland has 5 pieces of turbines with a capacity of each of the 6 MW turbine so that the total installed capacity of 30 MW with a voltage of 30 kV transmission [3]. The weight of each wind turbine is 12,000 tons (12 million pounds). Turbine rotor diameter is 154 meters, the length of the bar 75 meters and total height of turbine 253 meters (78 meters below the sea level and 175 metres from sea level to the end of the bar) [5]. Hywind Scotland is supported by 15 anchor with each anchor has a height of 16 meters, a diameter of 5 meters and a weight of about 300 tons. Pole anchor and turbine connected by a chain with a length of 2.500 metres and weighs 1.200 tons. Hywind Scotland able to illuminate more than 20.000 houses in the region of the UK [5].

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Figure 3. The development process of Hywind Scotland [3]

The funds needed to build the Hywind Scotland is 200 million pounds equivalent to 3.7 trillion rupiah [2]. To make wind turbines off the coast, the maximum allowed depth is 200 feet or about 61 meters. In addition, the pillar of the turbine should be planted in the seabed and must be able to withstand the waves of the sea so that the wind turbines stand sturdy. Hywind Scotland uses the concept of excellence which provide different than wind turbines are designed to be planted on the seabed. Statoil-owned floating wind turbine was built in depth of 255 feet or about 77 meters and Statoil explained that wind turbines can be installed at a depth of more than 2.600 feet or approximately 792 meters [2]. Hywind Scotland has several other advantages, namely the simple construction with a cheap manufacturing cost, resistance to extreme weather and the movement of optimal turbines.

Figure 4. Offshore wind energy potential of the world [3]

Offshore wind energy has huge potential. European countries have been building a wind farm off the coast with an installed capacity of 15 GW. Offshore wind energy potential of the world reach more than 100 GW [3]. Therefore, a floating wind turbine is expected to take 10% of the total potential. Statoil will illuminate the target of 12 million homes in the region of the UK in the year 2030. Furthermore, Statoil will develop technology Hywind in several countries such as Ireland, France, the USA and Japan.

Full Story of Hywind Scotland


[1] Nghiem, a., Mbistrova d., Fraile A and Remy t. 2017. Wind Energy in Europe: Outlook to 2020. Wind Europe [2] Gibbens, s. 2017. See The world's First Floating Wind Farm. https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2017/10/wind-farm-renewable-energy-scotland-video-spd/(retrieved January 19, 2018) [3] Statoil. 2017. Hywind – The world's Leading Offshore Wind Floatinf Solution. https://www.statoil.com/en/what-we-do/hywind-where-the-wind-takes-us.html (retrieved January 19, 2018) [4] Best, s. 2017. World's First Floating Wind Farm Starts Generating Electricity Off The Coast of Scotland. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4991890/Nicola-Sturgeon-officially-open-world-s-floating-wind-farm.html (retrieved January 19, 2018). [5] Rogers, s. 2017. Scotland Officially Opens The world's First Ever Floating Wind Farm. https://interestingengineering.com/scotland-officially-opens-the-worlds-first-ever-floating-wind-farm (retrieved January 19, 2018)

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