A new £1.5 million programme is offering UK innovators developing products and services for the offshore wind market the opportunity to test and demonstrate them on one of the world’s most cutting-edge fossil-free energy projects.
The jointly funded, three-year agreement between Vattenfall, the Swedish energy group, and the Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult, UK’s technology innovation and research centre for offshore renewable energy, will give innovators in the offshore wind supply chain the opportunity to test and demonstrate technologies in real-world conditions at Vattenfall’s pioneering £300 million European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre (EOWDC), off Aberdeen.
The programme is seeking innovators to bring forward technologies to solve some of the current operations and maintenance challenges facing the industry in areas such as blade repair and leading-edge erosion, robotics and autonomous systems and remote array cable monitoring and inspection.
If successful, companies chosen will be able to demonstrate their technologies at the EOWDC, potentially securing a route to market for their innovations.
Chris Hill, ORE Catapult’s operational performance director, said: “This new £1.5 million programme with Vattenfall and the EOWDC provides a unique opportunity for UK innovators to work with ORE Catapult and Vattenfall to bring new technologies to market through testing in a controlled real-world environment.
“Accessing real-world opportunities to test, demonstrate and validate their technologies is often a real barrier to commercialisation for small innovators, and therefore this investment should give UK companies a crucial edge in developing technology and services for the new wave of offshore wind developments and help the UK government to meet its target of generating at least a third of the UK’s electricity from offshore wind by 2030.”