The BlackRockWind concept makes it possible to:
- Deploy offshore wind easily to any location
- Accommodate 10 – 25MW wind power capacity per platform unit
- Deploy floating wind mills at any water depth from approximately 10 meters
- Deploy floating wind mills at any distance from shore
- Host any size of wind turbines commercially available
- Reduce the spacing between wind turbines
- Lower the capital cost per installed MW
- Lower the cost and accessibility of operation and maintenance
- Eliminate the need for specialized service vessels either for deployment or during operation
- Eliminate additional structures for power conditioning and substation in a wind mill park
- Combine wind and liquid fuel turbine power as well as power storage
The wind power solution proposed by BlackRockWind Ltd (patent pending application no. 61622088) is to utilize a dedicated floating structure in the form of a hull. The hull can either be purpose built or alternatively, an existing structure like the hull of a vessel can be used.
Due to new and more stringent environmental legislation as well as highly competitive market forces, many older vessels are becoming “out-of-service” as they are gradually being substituted by more modern and efficient vessels. This already has and is expected to continue to result in a ramp up of vessels being scrapping and the steel being recycled. BlackRockWind proposes such hulls, possibly cleared of the top structure normally used for living quarters and command bridges, any on deck equipment as well as the engine may enter an extended service as a basis for this wind power concept.
On the deck of such former tank or bulk vessel a series of wind mill installations can be mounted. Even if the vessel only has a single hull, when cleared of any on board remains from the cargo or bunker oil, the vessel as such represents no pollution risk and could be utilized for several more years in passive service as a platform for wind mills before final scrapping.
The BlackRockWind concepts holds the promise of efficiently utilising available space through a novel combination of horizontal and vertical wind turbines. All power produced may then be fed to the onboard substation for export ashore or for powering an increasing demand for subsea power as more oil and gas operations are carried out below the sea surface.
Such vessels often have both helicopter platforms as well as living quarters during active service. When put to service as wind mill platforms, such landing pads as well as a number of housing quarters could be kept in order to accommodate easy access by helicopter as well as possible temporary living quarters for any maintenance crew servicing the wind mills.
The structure will be safely moored using novel anchor and tension cables or chains developed for the offshore industry. By automatically adjusting the length of the mooring cables, the vessel will be kept broadside towards the prevailing wind direction under most circumstances. In addition, automatic wind mill blade pitching will maximise the power production at all times.