Equinor commits to Hywind Tampen floating project

Equinor has made a final investment decision on its NOK 5 billion (€500 million) Hywind Tampen project, to supply two North Sea oil and gas platforms with power from an 88MW floating wind farm.

An artist's impression of the planned Hywind Tampen project

The state-owned energy giant and its partners at the Snorre and Gullfaks oil fields first unveiled the floating wind solution in August 2018, and will commit about NOK 2.1 billion to the project.

Norway's low-carbon project-financing programme, Enova, will provide up to NOK 2.3 billion.

And the NOx Fund, a consortium of Norwegian businesses that wants to reduce nitrous oxide emissions in Norway, will invest NOK 566 million.

The 88MW Hywind Tampen will consist of 11 8MW turbines installed on spar buoy foundations — as used at Equinor's Hywind Scotland site — and is expected online in late 2022.

Equinor has not confirmed the turbine supplier, but only MHI Vestas and Siemens Gamesa currently supply 8MW machines.

They will be installed 140km from shore between the two oil and gas field, in water depths of between 260 and 300 metres.

Assembly of the turbines and foundation will take place in the Gulen Industrihamn harbour in western Norway ahead of transportation to the field in the North Sea.

Hywind Tampen could provide about 35% of the annual power demand of the Snorre A and B, and Gullfaks A, B and C platforms, Equinor stated.

Equinor co-owns the licence for Gullfaks with Petoro, which manages the Norwegian government’s direct investments in oil and gas, and the Norwegian subsidiary of oil and gas company OMV.

It co-owns Snorre with Petoro, ExxonMobil’s Norwegian subsidiary, the Norwegian unit of Japanese energy firm Idemitsu and German oil and gas company DEA, as well as Norwegian company Vår Energi.

The Gullfaks field is expected to produce until 2036, while Snorre’s productive life is due to last until 2040.