Classification society ABS has provided certification services for the design, fabrication and installation for the first WindFloat facility. The WindFloat Aguçadoura unit is a 2 MW floating wind turbine moored in slightly less than 50 m water depth 4 km offshore the northern Portuguese coast.
The WindFloat project is the first offshore wind deployment in the world that did not require heavy lift equipment offshore. Final assembly and pre-commissioning took place in a controlled shoreside environment. This installation also is the first deployment of a semisubmersible structure supporting a commercial size wind turbine.
ABS design review engineers in Houston and ABS surveyors on site at the fabrication facilities in Portugal worked together with the developers and builders during the design, fabrication and installation phases of the project.
ABS certification of the semisubmersible and the mooring system was based on the applicable sections of ABS Offshore Rules and Guides and the ABS Guide for Offshore Wind Turbine Installations. The tower and the turbine were not part of the ABS certification.
The WindFloat is the result of the cooperative efforts of the partners that make up the WindPlus joint venture, an international group led by Portuguese power provider Energías de Portugal (EDP), which, through its Renewable Energy division, is the world’s third-largest supplier of wind energy, and the Spanish oil giant Repsol. Other Windplus JV partners are Principle Power Inc., a US energy technology developer based in Seattle, Washington, and a holder of the Windfloat patent, two Portuguese companies, a steel fabricator A. Silva Matos, and a Portuguese State venture fund InovCapital. The Danish wind turbine producer Vestas Wind Systems provided its V-80 2MW turbine for the project.