The Fowind consortium’s latest reports on facilitating offshore wind projects in India shows much progress has been made but more work needs to be done.
The Facilitating Offshore Wind in India’s (Fowind’s) reports on the potential for offshore wind energy in India focused on the states of Gujarat and Tamil Nadu. The reports are the final step towards laying out a roadmap for the offshore wind sector in India by Fowind and the Global Wind Energy Council and follows up on prefeasibility studies for Gujarat and Tamil Nadu in 2015.
The aim of the latest reports was to provide a concept design for a demonstration project of 150 MW to 504 MW in Gujarat's most promising offshore wind development area, ‘Zone A,’ which was identified in the prefeasibility study. This provides companies and government institutions with a starting point for future detailed offshore front-end engineering design studies and assists with the identification of key project risks in Gujarat. A parallel study was conducted for the state of Tamil Nadu.
Both reports noted that it is now of paramount importance that current high uncertainty with regards to wind resources, energy predictions, ground conditions and cost of energy are reduced and mitigated before an offshore windfarm is constructed in Tamil Nadu or Gujarat.
Beginning with selecting the optimum location for the project within the already identified Zone A, the report then focused on defining baseline metocean and geotechnical parameters. This process leads to optimising the design and outline project costing using DNV GL’s levelised cost of energy tool, Turbine.Architect.
Two different project sizes were analysed with 4 MW, 6 MW and 10 MW turbines, coming to a range of conclusions as to project cost and cost of energy in a range of configurations.
The two studies present an informed outlook about the amount of offshore wind capacity that could be reliably incorporated into the two state grids, efficiently and in a planned manner.
India made strong commitments under the UN Paris Climate Agreement and announced ambitious renewable energy goals in 2015, targeting 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2022. This target includes 60 GW from wind energy. More recently, India has expressed its strong interest in opening up the offshore wind segment.
The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy in India said the reports were the ‘the beginning of India’s journey from onshore to offshore.’