Aker Solutions and Cognite have been awarded a USD 2 million grant from the California Energy Commission (CEC) for a project called NextWind Real Time Condition Monitoring.
The project is focused on next generation solutions in wind through digitalisation and aims to develop a holistic digital solution that will enable monitoring the condition of an offshore floating wind farm and its impact on the environment via live data streaming.
Aker Solutions, partnering with Cognite, was selected for the grant award as part of the California Energy Commission’s Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC). The program provides grants for companies applying research and projects designed to help develop next-generation wind energy technologies. The projects must include objectives that increase the competitiveness, performance, and reliability of wind generation while reducing costs and effects on the environment and wildlife.
“This program aligns with Aker Solutions’ ambition to develop the offshore wind market in California providing affordable renewable electricity to the state, with the lowest possible environmental footprint and in peaceful coexistence with other ocean users and the local community,” says Luis Araujo, chief executive officer of Aker Solutions. “We are grateful to the CEC for trusting us with this important task and we look forward to starting this meaningful work.”
A digital twin model of physical offshore wind assets will be developed to assess conditions and integrity management. This real-time information will allow access and analysis of data to help reduce operating expenses and maintenance costs by improving production efficiencies. Making this data available to a wide range of users will allow for additional understanding of environmental and wildlife impacts to help reduce mitigation.
“We look forward to employing Cognite Data Fusion to this project to help revolutionise the wind market in California through data liberation and contextualisation,” says Dr John Markus Lervik, chief executive officer and co-founder of Cognite. “We believe applying new digital technologies is key to accelerating the green transition and increasing adoption of sustainable solutions in offshore wind by making them more cost-effective and efficient.”
In April 2018, the Redwood Coast Energy Authority selected a consortium which includes Aker Solutions, Principle Power and EDPR Offshore to enter into a public-private partnership to pursue the development of the proposed Redwood Coast Offshore Wind Project. The 100-150 megawatt floating offshore wind farm is planned to be located more than 30 kilometres off the coast of Humboldt Bay, and is expected online in the mid 2020’s. The team intends to use this project as a case study for the new initiative due to its relevance.
“Through its EPIC program, the Energy Commission strategically invests in clean energy research and technologies aimed at helping California achieve its 100% clean energy standard,” says CEC Vice Chair Janea Scott. “We are pleased to award EPIC funding to support this critical research project, which will develop data tools for floating offshore wind platforms that increase cost-competitiveness and reduce wildlife impacts.”