(OW) Ørsted and the infrastructure division of Spanish Acciona have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to explore options for floating wind foundations, including using carbon-neutral materials and industrialising the fabrication of concrete foundations.
Under the MoU, the two companies’ focus will be on the use of carbon-neutral bio-cement, bio-concrete, and other materials and solutions, with an aim to reduce floating wind levelised cost of electricity (LCoE) and environmental footprint, industrialise the fabrication of concrete foundations, and establish a European supply chain to support Ørsted’s floating wind project pipeline in Europe.
“The goal of our collaboration with Acciona is to take floating wind from the innovation to the industrialisation stage. Ørsted intends to further grow our European floating pipeline, with Spain being a key market of interest for us. Advancing floating wind technology and bringing it to market is a key strategic aim for Ørsted’s floating wind programme, and supply chain partnerships are the way to do just that”, said Rasmus Errboe, Executive Vice President and CEO of Region Europe at Ørsted.
Ørsted is already developing its first floating wind project in Scotland after the company acquired a majority stake in the 100 MW Salamander floating wind farm, developed by Simply Blue Energy and Subsea 7, last year. Last month, Salamander was selected as one of the 13 floating wind projects in Crown Estate Scotland’s Innovation and Targeted Oil and Gas (INTOG) leasing round.
At the beginning of 2022, the company also secured development rights for a floating wind project together with Falck Renewables and BlueFloat Energy through the ScotWind leasing round. The 1 GW project, located off Caithness, is Ørsted’s first large-scale floating wind development project anywhere in the world.
As for Acciona, the company’s renewable energy development arm, Acciona Energía, last year announced that it had developed two floating wind foundation designs that could be mass-produced and reduce manufacturing costs as well as carbon footprint.
Over the past couple of years, Acciona has also emerged as a developer or co-developer behind several proposed floating wind farms and the main shareholder in a floating wind technology company.
The company has requested at least two concessions offshore Italy, where it plans to build commercial-scale floating wind farms, qualified for the floating wind auction in California, and acquired 24 per cent of the capital of Eolink, a French company specialising in the development of floating offshore wind foundations, becoming the main shareholder in the process.
In April 2022, the Spanish company was announced as a partner to Scotland’s SSE Renewables in Poland, where SSE submitted an application for an offshore wind farm in the Baltic Sea in Poland, with Acciona Energía to join the development of the project if the license is granted.