The world's first industrial-scale floating wind prototype, Hywind 1, installed in 2009 off the west coast of Norway, will be reborn as an R&D unit, following a deal between developer Equinor and subsea engineering contractor Unitech Offshore.

Moored at the Metcentre offshore wind testing centre off Karmøy, the spar-based unit, known internally as the Hywind Demo, will be renamed Zefyros and used for research projects, new technology development and for teaching and training courses.

“Hywind Demo has been very important for Equinor’s development of floating offshore wind since it came into operation 10 years ago,” said Beate Myking, Equinor New Energy Solutions’ director of operations.