FREIA’s technology is in a wider sense competing with all other sources of (renewable) energy such as solar, onshore wind and traditional offshore wind power, but in particular with other floating wind turbine solutions. This document describes:
1. The advantages of offshore wind over onshore wind
2. Floating wind advantages over bottom fixed wind
3. FREIA’s multi turbine solution’s comparative advantages over other single floating wind turbine solutions. These advantages can be categorized in business case advantages, financial advantages, environmental advantages, economic advantages and concept and technical advantages
1. Compelling reasons for offshore wind power versus onshore wind power
Saturation possibilities large scale onshore wind parks
Large scale wind parks meant to replace for example nuclear power plants need a lot of space and they need to be close to consumer areas, being it urban or industrial. This creates competition for space, area use and tension with electricity grids. It also creates a vast popular resistance to wind turbines in sight, also called the ‘NIMBY-effect’, Not In My Back Yard effect. The returning issue for consenting projects onshore has lead to a saturation for scalable onshore wind parks.
Offshore is better suited for scalability
Offshore wind has the compelling advatantages of being out of sight, easy to scale up, less environmntal footprint then onshore and an almost unlimited potential for scaling up. This makes the offshore wind sector well positioned for future expansion if other power sources need to be replaced on a larger scale.
Larger wind turbines are an essential part in scaling up the wind industry. This puts high demands on transportability and other logistics which face severe constraints on roads and bridges. Offshore though, transportation and logistics are not as constrained to carry large blades and other equipment.
Offshore winds are stronger and better
Finally, offshore winds are better than onshore winds, both in terms of stability and predictability and in terms of energy potential. This has leads to larger energy output and a sharp decrease on LCOE for offshore wind projects and sharp increase in newly planned projects offshore.
2. Compelling reasons for floating wind energy versus traditional offshore wind
When it comes down to cost of energy, soil conditions and water depth play a significant role, next to the quality of winds and its energy potential obviously. Floating wind has the advantage of standardization, regardless of soil conditions, whereas traditional offshore wind needs to adapt every single tower to changing soil conditions. Standardization increases industrialization processes from design to production and installation. It also recuces risks for project delays or failures in the installation phase and it also allowas for a quicker and smoother de-commissioning.
Break even point
At the time of writing, it is generally assumed that around 40 meters of water depth the cost of energy for floating wind solutions can outcompete those for traditional offshore wind solutions. This is based on North Sea geological conditions. In more difficult soil conditions, like in China and Taiwan, this break even point could be reached even in more shallow waters.
According to many sources, Carbon Trust being one of them, floating wind power has the potential to outcompete traditional offshore wind power by 2030, even in waters more shallow than 40 meters.
Geological, consenting and logistical advantages
The best winds are generally to be found further offshore in deeper waters, only available with floating solutions. Generally these areas are less prone to competition for other use such as fishery, wild life or shipping lanes. Less impacts on the environment and human habitat, it also redfuces the NIMBY-effect, leading to quicker and easier consenting which lowers project risks.
Risks traditional offshore minimized
Bottom fixed offshore wind projects have some considerable financial risks and project failures due to difficulties during the installation phase. Floating minimizes those risks.
3. FREIA’s multi turbine solution’s comparative advantages over single floating wind turbines
Business case advantages
FREIA as a company has a unique business case with a holistic approach, integrating initial project financing, project management and technological development in a (new) market. Given the market demands for partial project financing, the need for experience in project management skills and the technology combined, FREIA has a comparative advantage in offering all three combined.
Despite that FREIA lacks a “balance sheet”, it does have a proven track record in successfully attracting new capital. Part of that advangate is SEB TL as the main FREIA shareholder.
The combination of 2 or more turbines on 1 platform, means there is less anchoring needed per installed MW capacity. This also means less preparation acitivities on the sea bottom. The concentration of turbines on a smaller area, means less impact for bird migration patterns. Less environmental impact is expecting to lower concenting risks.
Economic advantages, sharing costs per MW
Sharing 2 or more turbines one 1 platform leads to sharing costs for installation, mooring, cabling, O&M and monitoring and control, resulting in a lower LCOE. Also sub-stations sharing space with turbines, can be placed on one of the floating structures.
Exclusive and unique IP Rights
FREIA has an unique and exclsusive set of IP Rights. FREIA’s unique solution allows the platform to turn towards the wind, positioning all turbines in free wind allowing for multi turbine solutions.
Design and technological advantages
The platform size opens up for integrated solutions. FREIA’s semi-submersible structure is based on proven technology in basic structure, mooring, winching and turret from the offshore oil & gas sector. It’s eye catching design draws international media attention, creating free brand awareness.