The Royal Institution of Naval Architects (RINA) has announced an EU Joint Industry Project (JIP) which allows offshore solar technology to be scaled up to formats of 150MW.

The project, dubbed BAMBOO (Build scAlable Modular Bamboo-inspired Offshore sOlar systems) is a collaboration between 16 European partners, coordinated by RINA.

The collaboration includes offshore solar developer Oceans of Energy, four technology developers, five technical- and environmental consultancies, and three testing laboratories.

It also includes the marine policy think-tank European Marine Board, and the offshore wind farm developer Vattenfall as a potential client for implementation.

The technology developer partners include Solarge, TKF, Pauwels Transformers, and SolarCleano; consultancies include RINA, ABS, Aquatera, Aquatera Atlantico, and WavEC; and testing laboratories include MARIN, Fraunhofer CSP, SIRRIS.

The partnership will facilitate the European operators to build gigawatt-scale farms, which will become a new standard in offshore energy farms, said RINA.

RINA carbon reduction excellence executive vice president Andrea Bombardi said: “This project will contribute to enable feasible business cases of solar renewable energy offshore.

“RINA, thanks to the leading experience in the provision of energy yield assessment services for solar plants and in floating offshore systems, will pioneer the development of a new predictive yield model applicable to this emerging technology.

“We will bring to the project our competence in ground-native solutions offshore, in static and dynamic analysis on dynamic export cables, in comparative analysis between different power export layouts, in the definition of recycling strategies for PVs and electrical components at the end of their life and in the coordination of EU-funded projects.”

According to RINA, placing solar farms within offshore wind farms will make better use of the sea space, increase energy output, provide continuous power, and reduce costs for green electricity production and the energy system.

The project BAMBOO aims to resolve the remaining challenges in the path of the rollout of large-scale offshore solar into new and existing wind farms.

It will prove the performance of the solar panels in offshore conditions, and research its impact on the environment while securing sustainability in the whole value chain of the industry.

The project will mature the technologies and attract funds for the 100-200MW offshore solar farm at a Vattenfall offshore wind farm before the turn of the decade.