GL Garrad Hassan Project Force to Accelerate Cost Reductions for Offshore Wind


GL Garrad Hassan has launched a project to bring fresh thinking to the design of offshore wind turbines. Project FORCE (turbine optimization FOr Reduced Cost of Energy) will build on GL Garrad Hassan’s expertise in turbine design, control system engineering and structural modeling. The project will systematically consider new technologies that can be applied to offshore wind turbines and their support structures with the target of reducing the cost of energy from offshore wind farms.

Adopting an open-minded approach, Project FORCE will focus GL Garrad Hassan engineering expertise on the design of low cost offshore wind turbines in the 7-10MW range. Technologies to be considered include rotor design and innovative control systems which reduce structural loads at the same time as regulating turbine power.

“Investing in R&D has always been a high priority for GL Garrad Hassan. The results of Project FORCE will enhance the support we can offer our clients—as well as leading the industry towards a cost-sustainable future.” said Dr Tim Camp, Head of GL Garrad Hassan’s Turbine Engineering Competence Centre.

The UK government’s Offshore Wind Cost Reduction Task Force showed that offshore wind can achieve a levelized cost of energy of £100/MWh by 2020 and The Crown Estate’s Cost Reduction Pathways project identified “Technology Acceleration”’ as one route to achieving significant cost reductions.

GL Garrad Hassan’s Project FORCE addresses the challenge of cost reduction, focussing in particular on the use of new and innovative technology in offshore applications.

In an integrated design and cost analysis environment, Project FORCE will center on advanced control and rotor technologies. Possible technologies include:

• Advanced control systems including high order individual pitch control, multi-variable and Lidar assisted solutions;
• High speed, structurally flexible, downwind rotor blades;
• Fully integrated wind turbine, controller and support structure design;
• Use of topology optimization software to further improve wind turbine main structural components.

The results of the project will be made available to the industry later this year.

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