IWAKI, FUKUSHIMA PREF. – A huge floating wind turbine for an experimental offshore power generation project was unveiled Monday at Onahama port in Iwaki, Fukushima Prefecture.
With an output capacity of 7,000 kilowatts, the turbine is the largest piece of offshore wind power generation equipment in the world.
The project, commissioned by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry in fiscal 2011, aims to establish a business model to kick-start domestic wind turbine exports.
The new turbine, some 220 meters high including the floating foundation, will start operating some 20 km off Fukushima in September.
Since the turbine isn’t fixed to the sea bottom, it will transmit electricity to land via submarine cable.
Offshore turbines enjoy the benefit of more stable wind than onshore models, and are more efficient because they are not hampered by the constraints posed by land and transportation.
A 2,000-kilowatt wind turbine has already started operations off Fukushima. A third turbine with an output capacity of 5,000 kilowatts will be installed in fiscal 2015.