Chinese Offshore Development Is Being Mapped Out With 41 Clusters Planned, A Total Capacity Of 290GW

“Large turbines, large-scale development, floating foundation, offshore intelligent operation and maintenance, as well as deep-sea flexible direct current transmission technology, are the development direction of offshore wind power.”

On November 16th, at China-Europe Offshore Wind Power Cooperation Forum, Chen Shiyi, academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, indicates that China plans to promote offshore wind planning, and has reached a preliminary result at present. China plans to promote concentrated development offshore wind projects, and they are divided into 3 categories–project, cluster, and base. One single project size shall be not less than 1 million kW in principle. Build a million-kilowatt offshore wind power cluster from the single project teams and build a million-kilowatt offshore wind power base from the offshore wind clusters.

The overall layout of the plan will be around five million-kilowatt offshore wind bases–the Shandong peninsula, Yangtze River delta, southern Fujian, eastern Guangdong, and Northern Gulf, with a total of 41 offshore wind clusters, and a total capacity of about 290GW. Among them, 19 clusters are planned for the five bases, and 22 clusters are planned for the sea area outside the bases. That is equivalent to China’s total installed wind power capacity at the moment.

Experts from China Renewable Energy Engineering and Huaneng Group have shown their support for carrying out the floating offshore wind in the deep-sea area, and an insight estimated that floating offshore wind power can achieve parity around 2030.

With the increase of offshore distance, flexible DC power transmission has strong technical advantages in the grid-connection of large-scale wind farms, which can support the large-scale long-distance transmission of offshore wind power.

Recently, China’s 10MW offshore wind turbine, floating wind turbine, flexible DC power transmission technology projects have been implemented.

Huaneng Group said that they are embarking on the development of ultra-large offshore wind turbines, and cooperating with manufacturers to develop direct-drive and semi-direct drive ultra-large offshore wind turbines. At the same time, Huaneng Group is cooperating with manufacturers to carry out key technology research on mooring system design, control strategy optimization, load applicability evaluation, component adaptability design of floating fans of more than 10 MW.

China is the fastest-growing country in offshore wind power.

As of September, China’s installed offshore wind power capacity had reached 13.19 GW, making it the world’s largest offshore wind power market, according to the National Energy Administration of China.

It is also mentioned at the forum that during the 14th Five-Year Plan period, China’s newly installed offshore wind power capacity is expected to exceed 40 GW.

But China’s offshore wind development still faces challenges. Compared with the UK, Germany, and other European countries that have entered the stage of large-scale development, China’s offshore wind power is in the early stage of commercialization. By 2022, the national subsidy for offshore wind power will be abolished, but its investment cost is still far from reaching parity. The large-capacity turbine’s development cycle is short, and its reliability and maturity need to be verified. In addition, in terms of technology, China’s technology in deep-sea floating offshore wind is also immature. Not to mention the complex and bad natural conditions, and it is difficult to accurately evaluate the wind energy resources.

Company representatives are hoping for a more consistent policy, and they wish to improve the efficiency of installation by the innovation on technology development.