Technip Energies and a consortium of 11 leading contractors and universities have been selected by the European Commission to accelerate the development of industrial-scale floating wind technology.

The European Union’s NextFloat programme aims to demonstrate a technically commercially viable offshore wind solution for deep-water operations.

To meet the objectives of NextFloat, the consortium will use technology developed by X1 Wind which is designed to reduce the weight of the wind facility’s sub-structure and allow for a more efficient and compact mooring system to be deployed.

The consortium plans to install a full-scale 6-megawatt prototype wind farm at the Mistral test site in the French Mediterranean Sea to demonstrate the concept.

Mistral is one of many offshore energy technology test sites operated by the Open-C foundation in France.

According to Technip, this offshore testing campaign is relevant to upcoming commercial offshore wind farms that will require industrialised solutions for applications in excess of 15 MW.

Laure Mandrou, who heads up the Paris-based company’s carbon-free energy solutions business, said: “We are glad to have been selected for the NextFloat project, as part of the Horizon Europe programme.”

“By leveraging our existing collaboration with X1 Wind we are preparing the future of the floating offshore wind market and accelerating the development of disruptive floating offshore wind solutions at industrial scale.”

X1 Wind chief executive Alex Raventos added: “This ambitious project aims to bring substantial improvements in the competitiveness of floating wind and prepare the long-term mass deployment of this industry, so we can actively contribute to accelerate the energy transition, which together with energy security is becoming more and more critical in Europe and worldwide”.

Joining Technip and Barcelona-headquartered X1 in the consortium are three other Spanish companies — Naturgy, Ocean Ecostructures and Schwartz Hautmont — as well as 2B-Energy of the Netherlands, Athens-based Hellenic Cables, Tersan Shipyard in Turkey, France’s Ecole Centrale de Nantes, Belgium-based Ocas, Norway’s Hydro and the Technical University of Denmark.

The terms of a financial grant are being negotiated with the EC and the project is expected to begin in the fourth quarter of this year.

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