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Researchers Build Concrete-Composite Offshore Floating Wind Turbine
8/28/2013

The first offshore floating wind turbine has been deployed off the coast of Brewer, Maine. The project, overseen by the University of Maine's Advanced Structures and Composites Center, is an early attempt to harness some of the strong offshore winds and paves the way for wind farms to be set up 50 miles off the coast where the winds are strong and consistent. Backers of offshore wind turbines believe they can harvest 5 gigawatts of power by 2030.   (Source: University of Maine)
The first offshore floating wind turbine has been deployed off the coast of Brewer, Maine. The project, overseen by the University of Maine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center, is an early attempt to harness some of the strong offshore winds and paves the way for wind farms to be set up 50 miles off the coast where the winds are strong and consistent. Backers of offshore wind turbines believe they can harvest 5 gigawatts of power by 2030.
(Source: University of Maine)

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Elizabeth M
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Offshore winds have great potential
Elizabeth M   8/28/2013 7:26:50 AM
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I live at the coast and know how much energy potential there is in offshore winds. Projects like this are a good start to harnessing this energy to provide electricity, and I suspect it is the first of many similar efforts in the future. In fact, a Japanese company has built a wind turbine that also has a hybrid design to harvest ocean currents: http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1386&doc_id=265402

This is definitely a space to watch.

Charles Murray
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Re: Offshore winds have great potential
Charles Murray   8/28/2013 4:04:54 PM
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Liz, maybe I missed it in the story, but I'm wondering how far off the shore this wind turbine is being placed. I'm also wondering how they anchor it in place, so it can't be overturned.

a.saji
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Re: Offshore winds have great potential
a.saji   8/29/2013 12:35:51 AM
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@Murray: I think its being controlled through its weight itself. Normally they control via weight and I guess it's the same theory itself.  

Capt. Ron
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1:8th scale?
Capt. Ron   8/29/2013 8:50:10 AM
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Am I interpreting this correctly? When they say 1:8th scale, they mean they ultimately want to build a wind turbin 520 ft. tall? What happens during the perfect storm?

Ron

Jim S
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Concrete- Composite Floating Platform
Jim S   8/29/2013 9:29:07 AM
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Perhaps they should look at some of the offshore production platforms in the North Sea. They have used concrete there for many years. Some platforms float, but most anchor to the sea floor. They hold up well to storms.

Elizabeth M
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Re: Offshore winds have great potential
Elizabeth M   8/29/2013 11:01:23 AM
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To my knowledge, Chuck, I don't think this is very far offshore, as in the photos of it deployed you can still see land. And apparently there are three concrete hulls that keep it stable rather than an anchor. This story has more details: http://bangordailynews.com/2013/06/13/news/hancock/umaines-floating-prototype-becomes-first-offshore-wind-turbine-to-provide-power-to-us/

Elizabeth M
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Re: 1:8th scale?
Elizabeth M   8/29/2013 11:02:50 AM
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Hi, Capt. Ron, yes you read correctly. In the story link I posted in my previous comment it says the proposed turbines are taller than the Washington Monument. I suppose they will be built solidly enough to withstand the perfect storm, but I guess it would take those type of conditions to find out what happens.

Elizabeth M
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Re: Concrete- Composite Floating Platform
Elizabeth M   8/29/2013 11:07:30 AM
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Sounds like those platforms would be a good example to those deploying turbines offshore. I think the floating idea is a good one but anchorage may be a better option, especially to handle severe storms. I suppose it wil be a trial and error situation as some of these early platforms in the U.S. are deployed to see what works.

Jim S
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Re: Concrete- Composite Floating Platform
Jim S   8/29/2013 11:52:54 AM
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They are all anchored. The Floating type are tethered to the bottom through cables and anchors arranged around it. The others are tall enough that they are towed out floating and then sank so that the bottom is firmly on the sea bed. There have been some tv programs on how it was done.

Jim S
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Gold
Re: Concrete- Composite Floating Platform
Jim S   8/29/2013 11:52:54 AM
NO RATINGS
They are all anchored. The Floating type are tethered to the bottom through cables and anchors arranged around it. The others are tall enough that they are towed out floating and then sank so that the bottom is firmly on the sea bed. There have been some tv programs on how it was done.

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