One of EOLINK’s biggest missions was achieved this summer with the successful installation of its Floating Offshore Wind Turbine (FOWT) anchorage system at the SEM-REV offshore test site, operated by OPEN-C Foundation, off Le Croisic in Western France, as part of the 5MW France-Atlantique project.
With the anchorage system now in place to secure the floating unit, EOLINKaims to complete the final phase in the France-Atlantique project by installing a demonstration 5MW FOWT in 2024, paving the way for commercial projects that will ultimately provide cost effective energy to thousands. The pioneering French engineering firm’s 5MW wind turbine is a pre-commercial version of the 15MW+ units that EOLINK intends to install with its patented four-mast pyramid structure that is 45% lighter than a single turbine mast, and generates 10% additional energy by using longer turbine blades. The Final Investment Decision, taken in November last year, was a decisive step for the subsea anchor system manufacturing and installation, as well as for the FOWT unit that is due to be towed to the site and commissioned in 2024.
The EOLINK triple anchoring system — which will see each of the three embedded anchors connected to a submerged buoy by three mooring lines — will withstand loads of up to 315 tons and secure the innovative FOWT structure. Installation was completed earlier in the summer.
“It was not an easy operation as the anchors had to be installed in a very small area within the SEM-REV concession and next to other existing prototypes, and also due to challenging weather conditions,” said EOLINK’s CCO Alain Morry. “The 5MW unit is on the technological road map to be in a position to address commercial projects expected to be commissioned in 2028.”
Photo & video credits: France Atlantique Project ©EOLINK-Fondation OPEN-C-Time to production
For EOLINK, the preliminary installation marks the first offshore activity in the France-Atlantique project.
For the SEM-REV offshore test site, created by Centrale Nantes and now operated by the OPEN-C Foundation, this is an important step towards hosting multiple FOWT prototypes in parallel. Since 2022, the SEM-REV team has been upgrading the site to increase its grid injection capacity to 10MW, in particular to welcome EOLINK’s FOWT.
Working alongside project designer and coordinator EOLINK is VALOREM, which is in charge of turbine assembly on the floater through its operation and maintenance subsidiary VALEMO, as well as the OPEN-C Foundation for site management and hosting infrastructure. The project received €14.9M in funding from the France 2030 programme in 2022, as well as further investment from VALOREM and ACCIONA. Installation of the subsea anchor system was also partially funded by the Ocean DEMO project.
The next offshore phase will see EOLINK’s FOWT towed out to SEM-REV, connected and then commissioned in 2024.
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