Japanese consortium to build floating wind farm in Fukushima

Giant Japanese trading company Marubeni is leading the consortium which includes the University of Tokyo, Mitsubishi, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, IHI Marine United, Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding

One year after a devastating magnitude-8.9 earthquake shook Japan and caused world’s biggest nuclear disaster since Chernobyl, a group of Japanese companies are building an experimental offshore wind farm near the tsunami-ravaged plant.

Giant Japanese trading company Marubeni is leading the consortium which includes the University of Tokyo, Mitsubishi, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, IHI Marine United, Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding, Nippon Steel, Hitachi, Furukawa Electric, Shimizu and Mizuho Information & Research.

The consortium has the backing of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

This experimental project will have three floating wind turbines and one floating power sub-station off the coast of Fukushima.

Plans of installing a 2-megawatt floating wind turbine from Fuji Heavy Industries this year are ongoing, as well as putting up the world’s first 66-kilovolt floating power sub-station, provided by Hitachi.

In the second stage of the project, two 7-MW wind turbines from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries will be added between 2013 and 2015.

Marubeni hopes the project will spark economic growth in the area and create employment in the Fukushima Prefecture as part of recovery efforts in the wake of the Great East Japan Earthquake.

The company says the project could open doors for Fukushima to export floating offshore wind technology.

IHI Marine, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Mitsui Shipbuilding will produce «floaters» for the turbines to be installed 20 to 40 kilometers out to sea, in waters 100 to 150 meters deep.

“We believe that creating a practical wind farm business scheme through this experimental project could lead to the deployment of large scale floating wind farms in the future,” Marubeni said in a press release.

“Moreover, taking advantage of the experience and knowledge gained through this, the world’s first floating wind farm, this business could be expanded on a global basis and lead to the development of a new Japanese export industry.” – EcoSeed Staff

http://ecoseed.org/ – ECOticias.com

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