The flagship floating unit for the world’s first wind-powered offshore oil decarbonisation project is now assembled in northern Norway.

One of eleven that will make up the 88-megawatt Hywind Tampen array being built by energy giant Equinor’s North Sea Snorre-Gullfaks field as part of plan to cut emissions at the oil & gas complex by a third, the unit is made up of a concrete spar hull topped with a Siemens Gamesa SG8.0-167DD.

A sun-lit image of the unit was posted by Ole Arild Larsen, the project's operations manager, on LinkedIn, with the caption: “View of the first Floating Wind Turbine for Hywind Tampen in Gulen this morning.”

The turbines are being fitted to the spars – which were built by Aker Solutions at its Dommersnes construction site in Vindafjord using a design developed in the offshore oil industry – in Gulen, north of Bergen, for tow-out to the project site, some 140 kilometres offshore.

Once online in the third quarter of 2022, the array will be the world’s first floating wind array linked to an offshore oil and gas field.

Equinor built the first commercial floating wind farm, the 30MW Hywind Scotland, started up in 2017, and, as the company's senior vice president of new energies Beate Myking told Recharge recently in an exclusive interview, this latest project is one of a number of global “stepping stones” to development of utility-scale pure-play arrays of 500MW and larger.

(This article was first published by Upstream's sister renewable energy publication, Recharge.)