Wind energy – floating wind
Aker Offshore Wind has outlined plans to utilise Scotland’s first offshore wind underwater substation as part of its bids for major offshore windfarms.
The multi-million subsea innovation would be developed, manufactured, and supplied in Scotland by Aker Solutions and provide major export opportunities for Scottish businesses.
Substations – which help move the energy created by wind turbines into homes and businesses – are traditionally installed above sea level but moving them down to the seabed brings several reliability and cost benefits.
For example, the seawater can be used as a natural cooling system, while reliability is increased through stable temperatures, fewer components and no rotating parts. In addition, operational costs can decrease by less maintenance and reduced material use.
The project would be delivered as a part of the ScotWind licensing process, for which Aker Offshore Wind has teamed up with Ocean Winds to submit a series of floating bids which could deliver up to 6,000MW of energy in the Outer Moray Firth. It would be by far the UK’s biggest wind energy development and power millions of homes with renewable energy.
“This is a world-leading innovation that would be developed, manufactured and supplied in Scotland,” says Sian Lloyd-Rees, managing director of Aker Offshore Wind UK. “Both the Aker group and Ocean Winds have the necessary heritage and experience to deliver this at scale. We know the benefit is there – it will revolutionise how energy is produced and present Scotland with the opportunity to export genuinely innovative technology to the rest of the world.”
“This technology would be supported by tens of millions of investment and work would start next year. It’s a proven technology that we are now using to ramp up the role of renewables in Scotland. Our vision is for the UK to become a global leader in floating offshore wind, contributing to our net zero mission with green energy at scale. Through innovation, we have the opportunity to implement new technology in the ScotWind leasing round, making Scotland and the UK a global leader in subsea solutions for floating offshore wind and exporting the technology around the world.”