These companies will build a floating wind turbine out of aluminum

Aluminum and energy giant Hydro and floating wind specialist World Wide Wind will build an offshore floating wind turbine out of aluminum.

Oslo-headquartered Hydro is one of the largest aluminum companies in the world. It has operations in some 50 countries.

World Wide Wind is a Norwegian startup that has designed a wind turbine with counter-rotating rotors mounted on a vertical axis that tilts with the wind, similar to sailboats. Its design (pictured above) has no nacelle, gear, cooling, or yaw. It has two rotors with three blades each that sweep in an inverted V-shape. The generator is at the base, so the added weight helps keep the turbine afloat.

World Wide Wind asserts that “today, wind turbines used for offshore floating wind have more or less the same design as turbines meant for land-based wind. In effect we are moving a land-based technology offshore.”

Hydro and World Wide Wind will jointly develop a wind turbine prototype that they say will be uniquely designed for floating deep-water offshore conditions. The companies will use sustainable and recyclable materials – including aluminum – in the construction of the prototype.

Trond Lutdal, CEO of World Wide Wind, says:

Having Hydro as a partner in developing our turbine using sustainable materials as aluminium is a big step forward for us. Use of local [materials] will be part of our common strategy going forward.

And Trond Furu, research manager at Norsk Hydro Corporate Technology, says:

For Hydro, this is an entry into the wind turbine production chain, and at the same time we are strengthening our position within renewable energy.

The companies will also build a consortium of industrial partners.

Read more: A colossal 18 MW wind turbine is about to debut in China

Photos: World Wide Wind


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Avatar for Michelle Lewis Michelle Lewis

Michelle Lewis is a writer and editor on Electrek and an editor on DroneDJ, 9to5Mac, and 9to5Google. She lives in White River Junction, Vermont. She has previously worked for Fast Company, the Guardian, News Deeply, Time, and others. Message Michelle on Twitter or at michelle@9to5mac.com. Check out her personal blog.