Nass&Wind unit in place off France

Developer Nass&Wind Offshore has moored a floating monitoring platform off the west coast of France to measure the met-ocean conditions in waters in the frame to be developed with offshore wind and marine energy farms.

The unit, which is to be tested for six months off Saint-Vaast la Hougue, will assess the wind resources and sea conditions to de-risk future fixed and floating wind and tidal turbines, and wave energy generators expected to be installed in the area off Brittany.

“The launch of this highly innovative floating measurement platform is a very important step in our development,” states Nass&Wind deputy general manager Romain Baronnet. "Once testing is complete and the platform is certified, [we] will have a unique measurement system.”

The monitoring platform, which measures 12 metres in diameter, 5.2 metres high and weighs some 70 tonnes, is based on a design for a Lanby (large automatic navigation buoy) beacon.

It was built at the Manche Industrie Marine in Dieppe, before being towed out to location by Thomas Services Maritimes, with marine construction work carried out by outfit Iroise Mer to moor the unit in some 20 metres of water.

Nass&Wind is working with French naval contracting giant DCNS to build a 1MW prototype of a floating wind turbine concept called WinFlo, which is due to be moored at the grid-connected SEM-REV wave and wind energy testing facility off Le Croisic this year.

The contractor is part of consortium led by France’s EDF EN and Danish group Dong for the Saint-Nazaire wind farm project awarded in the country’s first call for tenders in 2012.