China National Offshore Oil Corporation has commissioned China’s first deep-water offshore wind farm, located in the Beibu Gulf of the South China Sea.

CNOOC said that the Haiyou Guanlan floating wind project was connected to the grid last weekend, providing electricity to offshore oil and gas production facilities in the South China Sea.

Located 136 kilometres from Wenchang in Hainan province, the floater with installed capacity of 7.25 megawatts, is 200 metres high with a total draft of 11,000 tonnes.

The facility is moored by nine anchor chains and fixed in water depths of 120 metres. The turbine is connected to the grid of the Wenchang oil complex through a five-kilometre dynamic cable.

The floating wind turbine is designed to generate 22 million kilowatt hours per annum of electricity, which could reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 22,000 tpa and save 10 million cubic metres per annum of natural gas.

Tang Xinguo, director of the Wenchang 13-2 oilfield, said the floating wind facility is China’s first floating wind power platform installed more than 100 kilometres from the coast in a water depth of more than 100 metres.

He said that the Haiyou Guanlan facility is built to resist typhoons with magnitude of 17.

The structure applies a spread mooring system and online tensioner to enhance stability to such an extent that the floating platform will stay in operation even when horizontal displacement reaches 33.8 metres during extreme weather.

Wenchang’s power utilities face a lack of gas supply to fuel their engines and CNOOC is keen to supplement the power supply via offshore wind as part of its efforts to reduce carbon emissions.

The Wenchang oil complex comprises two wellhead platforms, Wenchang 13-1 and Wenchang 13-2. Operator CNOOC Ltd has just completed refitting the two unmanned platforms into manned facilities for safety reasons.

Oil is produced to the Nanhai Fenjing floating production, storage and offloading vessel, from where crude is shipped to an onshore terminal by shuttle tankers.

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