Production on Solar-powered Gas Platform Begins

Wednesday, April 19, 2006
The world's first gas platform powered solely by wind and solar energy has begun production, in a breakthrough for the offshore industry in low-cost exploitation of marginal fields. Royal Dutch Shell announced that it has begun pumping gas from its Cutter platform in the U.K. southern North Sea. The tiny platform, powered by two wind turbines and a pair of solar panels, cost $142.6m to develop and is expected to produce gas at the rate of some 3 million cubic feet a day for the next 15 years. The Cutter platform, about half the size of conventional satellite platforms and built for 40 per cent of the cost, uses only a fraction of the energy of traditional oil installations. It measures just eight meters by eight and has no helideck. Based on the construction of offshore wind turbines, it rests on a single leg. (Source: The Independent)

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