Statoil has secured a lease from the Crown Estate to construct the world’s first floating offshore wind farm off the east coast of Scotland.
The Hywind project will be situated near Buchan Deep, about 25km to 30km off the coast of Peterhead in Aberdeenshire.
It will cover around 4 square kilometres, at a water depth of 95m to 120m.
The wind farm will feature five, 6 MW floating turbines operating in waters exceeding 100m of depth. After completion, the wind farm will power about 20,000 households.
Preliminary on-shore and near-shore work is due to begin later this year and the turbines erection is planned to start in 2017, with first power being generated by the end of next year.
Hywind Scotland project director Leif Delp said: "We are very pleased to develop this project in Scotland, in a region with a huge wind resource and an experienced supply chain from oil and gas.
"Through the hard work of industry and supportive government policies, the UK and Scotland is taking a position at the forefront of developing offshore wind as a competitive new energy source."
Statoil’s Hywind concept integrates known technologies in a new setting and opens up the potential for capturing wind energy in deep-water environments.
The concept features a wind turbine placed on top of a ballasted steel cylinder. The company said Hywind is turbine independent and, in principle, any offshore wind turbine generator can be used as long as the combined weight of the nacelle and rotor is within the marine stability requirements.
Image: Model of floating wind farm to be constructed off the coast in Scotland. Photo: Courtesy of Statoil.