Following the French government’s push for renewable energy projects, EDF was selected to construct a pilot floating wind farm for its Provence Grand Large project.
The project, which remains subject to EDF’s final investment decision, would also benefit from a state financing scheme backed by the Environment and Energy Management Agency – Agence de L’Environnement et de La Maitrise de L’Energie (ADEME).
Under its deal with EDF, SBM would provide engineering, procurement, construction and installation services of the floating and mooring components for three floating wind systems.
SBM would supply the floaters’ components on a turnkey basis, it said.
The company also aims to collaborate with French research institute IFP Energies Nouvelles (IFPEN), to further develop the floating system and its engineering capabilities. If the project goes through, IFPEN will provide engineering services to SBM for the Provence Grand Large project.
The execution planning remains subject to discussions with EDF, authorities and other project stakeholders, as the project is still subject to achieving committed financing.
SBM has been gliding towards renewables as its oil and gas experience, mooring solutions and the design, construction and installation of floating units, all are transferable skills between the two industries.
“Compatible with all wind turbines, SBM’s floater, developed in cooperation with IFPEN, uses field-proven, offshore technology and components that have a track-record for the highest level of reliability and performance,” SBM said.
“The minimal footprint floater represents an economical solution for the development of floating wind farms, both in terms of capital expenditure, thanks to a light and optimised structure and in terms of operating expenditures thanks to reduced motion and stress on the turbine components,” the company said.
“The solution can be assembled and deployed using existing construction and port infrastructure.”
Earlier this week the company reported a third quarter drop in revenues amid difficult market conditions and slow activity in the oil and gas industry.
The group saw its earnings drop to $1.5 billion from $2 billion year-on-year, and, as a result, it cut back on spending plans for the year.