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Expert Interview
Universal Foundation A/S on the Next
Generation Multi MW Turbines
Søren Nielsen, Director Technology at U...
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Universal Foundation A/S on the Next Generation Multi MW Turbines - interview with Søren Nielsen

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Universal Foundation A/S on the Next Generation Multi MW Turbines

Søren Nielsen, Director Technology at Universal Foundation A/S, gives an interview regarding the development of multi MW turbines. He discusses the challenges, which prototypes are the most promising and where is the potential to save costs. Read the full interview here:
http://bit.ly/SNielsen_interview

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Universal Foundation A/S on the Next Generation Multi MW Turbines - interview with Søren Nielsen

  1. 1. Expert Interview Universal Foundation A/S on the Next Generation Multi MW Turbines Søren Nielsen, Director Technology at Universal Foundation A/S, will be a speaker at this year’s international conference Giant Offshore Wind Turbines. Before the event, we had the chance to talk to Nielsen about the current challenges for the wind industry regarding the development of multi MW turbines. Read the full interview here! IQPC: What – in your opinion - is the current challenge for the wind industry regarding the development of multi MW turbines? Søren Nielsen: The advance of next generation multi MW turbines is very much needed in order to reduce the cost of offshore wind energy. All stu- dies show very clearly that the single biggest impact on the LCoE comes from an increase in WTG size. In recent years the industry has craved more volume in order to standardize and ensure enough output to establish an efficient supply side. The increase in turbine size counteracts this and hence volume per project will be reduced.This is by some seen as a ma- jor challenge. The second biggest impact comes on the Balance of Plant side – more specifically on foundation struc- tures. Already with today’s “normal” site conditions of e.g. 25m meter water depth and still relatively close to shore we are as an industry facing the major challenge of having an increase in turbine size im- pacting the size/weight of the foundation structures massively. Latest we have seen the announcement from a major UK Round 2 site, where the traditional monopile foundation structures designed for 6MW turbines have reached a weight of up to 1.200tonnes and with transition pieces of up to 400tonnes. This presents any developer with the challenge of con- straints in the supply chain on both fabrication and installation with very limited availability of suitable facilities and vessels, potential noise constraints during installation, you rely on a very extensive and expensive marine spread for installation, and we will continue to see issues related to grouting, scour pre- vention, decommissioning etc. All in all one could fear that the industry, in the effort to drive LCoE down by means of bigger turbines combines with the “preferred” foundation solutions, end up delivering a white elephant. IQPC: How could the industry face these challenges? Søren Nielsen: First of all we of course need to have a 360 degree picture of how improvements in one end of a project, ultimately end up affecting the total cost of the project. A holistic approach to offshore wind park design is required and this is proving to be quite a challenging discipline – especially as the parks increase in size and new technologies are in- troduced. At Universal Foundation being a part of a broader supplychainofferingundertheFred.Olsenumbrella, we are in a strong position to take this holistic app- roach at least on turbine installation, foundation engineering, fabrication and installation. We firmly believe that on the integration of multi-MW tur- bines and suitable foundation structures, innovation based on proven technologies is key to deliver the much required reductions in LCoE. Universal Foun- dation is a very good example of how you can com- bine a proven foundation technology from wind (the monopile and gravity based structures), with suction www.giant-offshore-turbines.com

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