Wind power Vestas announces deep water offshore and energy storage

Wind energy manufacturer Vestas announced two R&D projects in new business areas: cost-effective deep water foundations for large offshore wind turbines and an Intelligent Energy Management System that will introduce energy storage into a wind farm.

Vestas said both projects are meant to secure a lower cost of wind energy production. Building foundations offshore at large depths is a huge challenge. Vestas wants to design and build deep water jacket foundations for very large wind turbines located far offshore in water depths of up to 70 meters.

Normally, foundations and wind turbines are contracted as two separate items. By addressing foundations as well, the wind turbine maker believes it can drive down costs and increase quality.

“The competition on the market is fierce. The winners of the offshore race will be the ones that are able to deliver reliable products that can be installed at very large depths. This offshore project focuses on developing foundations that secures the highest quality possible at lowest possible price. This way we can secure our customers the lowest cost of energy in the long run,” said Finn Strøm Madsen, President of Vestas Technology R&D.

The second project announced is the Intelligent Energy Management System for a Virtual Power Plant. This project will introduce energy storage into a wind power plant as an optional component for enhanced power generation control. Vestas will assess integrating the turbine and battery while Aalborg University will explore the battery properties. Vestas has selected the Vestas lithium ion batteries.

“Storage embedded in the wind power plant allows the power to be regulated without compromising any capture of available wind energy. Such a balancing mechanism opens for even higher amounts of wind power on the grid and for added value of the generated wind power to the transmission system operator,” Madsen said.

The Danish National Advanced Technology Foundation announced that they will support the two projects with a total of DKK 55 million. The total cost of the projects will be DKK 110-120 million. Both projects will run for 3-5 years.