First Portuguese Offshore Wind Turbine
The turbine is installed on an innovative floating foundation called the WindFloat.
In addition to being the first offshore wind turbine in Portugal, this is the first offshore wind turbine to be installed without the use of any heavy lift vessels or piling equipment at sea. All final assembly, installation and pre-commissioning of the turbine and substructure took place on land in a controlled environment. The complete system was then wet-towed offshore using simple tug vessels.
The WindFloat is equipped with a Vestas v80 2.0MW turbine capable of producing enough electricity for 1,300 households. The system is located 5km off the coast of Aguçadoura, Portugal, and has already produced in excess of 1.7GWh. The WindFloat ushers in a new era in the offshore wind industry permitting utilities to target the highest quality wind resources, independent of water depth.
The WindFloat has already endured a harsh winter environment in the open Atlantic, having withstood waves of up to 15 metres at the close of 2011. The system performed remarkably and within predictions anticipated using sophisticated design tools. Further, power production figures support the jointventure's vision of the WindFloat's significant and game-changing role in the global offshore wind market.