18 Apr 2011 11:04:08
Larger blades to cut price of energy-efficient offshore wind
The cost of energy-efficient energy from offshore wind farms could soon be similar to inshore projects thanks to a number of design innovations.
A report by the Energy Technologies Institute, titled Helm Wind, found that moving to larger blades could help to cut costs by up to 30 percent.
The study was led by energy giant E.ON, alongside Rolls-Royce, BP and the University of Strathclyde and looked into how capital costs could be reduced by a quarter, with operational costs also being halved.
David Clarke, chief executive of the institute, said: "This project took a completely fresh look at all aspects of offshore wind turbines to identify concepts and technologies that could deliver significant reductions in the cost of energy."
He added that sufficient improvements could be made through technology innovation, bringing offshore energy costs in line with onshore schemes.
Recently, it was revealed by the Renewable Energy Foundation that targets have not been met, despite grants adding up to billions of pounds being pumped into the wind industry.