X1 Wind installs floating wind platform

X1 Wind’s X30 prototype floating platform has been successfully installed at the PLOCAN test site in the Canary Islands.

X1 Wind successfully installs floating wind platform in Spain
X1 Wind successfully installs floating wind platform in Spain - X1 Wind

Barcelona-based X1 Wind said a suitable weather window allowed the company, along with partners from the EU-backed PivotBuoy Project, to complete the installation process, connecting the fully-functional floating wind prototype to the mooring system and existing dynamic cable.
In a statement, Jorge Casanovas, X1 Wind operations manager, said: “As installation work comes to a close another exciting chapter begins for X1 Wind as we prepare for operations to deliver first power to the PLOCAN smartgrid.

“We are especially thankful to those partners and suppliers that have played an instrumental role in the final installation phase, developing a ground-breaking mooring, connection and installation solution for our X30 prototype. Now successfully installed, we will begin monitoring the platform in real-time with multiple sensors integrated within our in-house SCADA system.”The X30 platform is said to have been developed with design features to streamline installation, including a lightweight and stable floater which can be wet towed by local vessels. The PivotBuoy Project is focused on demonstrating a mooring system configuration that combines the advantages of a SPM (single point mooring) with a small TLP (Tension-Leg Platform) mooring system, allowing the ability to reach deeper waters while minimising the footprint and impact on the seabed.

Fitted with a Vestas V29 turbine, the 1:3 scale prototype has been stationed at a 50m water depth in a downwind configuration, creating a passive ‘weathervaning’ effect that X1 Wind said eliminates the need for an active yaw system. The scalability of X1 Wind’s technology will enable the firm to provide 15MW scale turbines and beyond, and to deploy them at very deep sites.X1 Wind CEO and co-founder Alex Raventos said: “Data obtained from the X30 will contribute to de-risk the technology, improve the design, and obtain the certification of our commercial-scale platforms in preparation for upcoming tenders in Spain and other countries worldwide.”

After completing the installation, the PivotBuoy project - backed by a €4m grant from the European Commission H2020 Program - will be tested in fully operational conditions until March 2023. Project partners include EDP New, DNV, Intecsea, ESM and Degima, plus research centres WavEC, DTU and PLOCAN.