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Windtech International July August 2024 issue

 

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Oasis Power BuoyA collaboration of UK green technology companies has been awarded a share of the Department for Transport and Innovate UK’s £60 million Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition (CMDC) grant funding to install an offshore charging station within a UK wind farm.
 
Project leaders Oasis Marine have partnered with Turbo Power Systems, Verlume and the Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult to deliver the Offshore Charging Station. This smart energy storage and charging infrastructure will enable fully electric maritime operations within offshore wind farms.
 
During the two-year project, offshore charging infrastructure will be developed for charging hybrid and electric crew transfer vessels (CTVs) and will be demonstrated over two phases. The first will prove the transfer of power utilising Verlume’s battery and intelligent energy management technology, to charge a vessel via the Oasis Power Buoy while at sea. During the second phase the project will work with Vattenfall regarding technical and regulatory developments, aiming to lead to an on-turbine demonstration at their European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC) within Aberdeen Bay.  AC power generated by the existing wind turbines will be supplied via Turbo Power Systems high power charging solution to the Oasis Power Buoy.  During the demonstration a hybrid CTV would operate from Aberdeen Harbour to the wind farm, to then connect and recharge from the Oasis Power Buoy whilst waiting in field as maintenance technicians work on the turbines.
 
The infrastructure is building on the preceded development of Oasis Marine’s Power Buoy.   Turbo Power Systems will design, build and test a high-power DC power supply for the conversion of power from the wind turbine to the charging unit. Verlume will utilise its energy storage expertise, supplying a modular battery energy storage system with integrated intelligent energy management to enable early testing and ORE Catapult will be responsible for CTV requirements, supporting a regulatory review and project management activities over this period. The project is supported by Vattenfall, operators of Aberdeen Bay Windfarm.
 
Crew transfer vessels will be the primary focus of the project, however the concept could also be scaled for oil and gas vessels, as well as larger service operations vessel (SOV) daughter craft which are considered an emerging vessel type set to increase in numbers rapidly as windfarms move farther from shore.
 
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