Five-year agreement to advance UK offshore technologies

GE Renewable Energy and the UK’s Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult have signed a five-year research and development agreement to test and develop offshore wind technologies.

GE’s Haliade-X 12MW offshore wind turbine and eHaliade 150-6MW will undergo advanced test and demonstration programs that accurately replicate real-world operational conditions to enhance performance and reliability.

Testing will take place at ORE Catapult’s 15MW power train test facility at Blyth, Northumberland.

Research and development activities will include cooling technologies, converters, loading conditions across mechanical and electrical components, grid testing and design validation.

The collaboration will drive technology improvements that will help to develop the UK supply chain and increase access to demonstration opportunities for innovative small businesses.

The agreement also includes a £6 million (US$ 8 million) combined investment with Innovate UK and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) to install the world’s largest and most powerful grid emulation system at Catapult’s National Renewable Energy Centre in Blyth.

The grid emulation system (GES) will be largest and most advanced testing platform of its type in the world, capable of demonstrating grid code compliance.

It will also allow different wind turbine configurations, including double-fed induction generators and synchronous generators without a fully rated converter, to be tested.

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