Italy

Italy

Plans advance for first Med floating offshore project

A 250MW floating offshore wind farm off the south-western coast of the Italian island of Sicily, in the Mediterranean Sea, could start construction in 2023.

Offshore wind has been slow to take off in southern Europe, although WindFloat Atlantic's 2MW demonstration project operated in Portuguese waters from 2011 to 2016
Offshore wind has been slow to take off in southern Europe, although WindFloat Atlantic's 2MW demonstration project operated in Portuguese waters from 2011 to 2016

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The 25-turbine, €740 million 250MW 7Seas Med 7Seas Med (250MW) Offshoreoff Marsala, Sicily, Italy, Europe Click to see full details project is to be developed by Denmark’s Copenhagen Offshore Partners, with the financial backing of Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners.

The Danish developer is behind a number of offshore wind farms globally, including Vineyard Wind in the US and Australia’s Star of the South.

According to the environmental impact assessment study submitted late last year to the Italian authorities by engineering firm IL Studio, the project will use 25 Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy (SGRE) SG10-193 turbines. 

Since the study was drafted last July, SGRE has significantly advanced its offshore turbine offering by upgrading the 10MW model to the SG11-193 Flex in November 2019. Last month, it revealed details of its SG14-222 DD platform.

The Italian project plans to deploy TetraSpar-style floating foundations (pictured), developed by offshore wind pioneer Henrik Stiesdal, formerly chief technology officer at Siemens. The project site has water depth of up to 300 metres, making it unsuitable for fixed-bottom foundations.

Over the past decade, several offshore wind projects have been proposed in Italian waters but failed to make any progress. The only one to have gained all necessary permits is the 30MW Port of Taranto, in the Adriatic Sea. Plans for the 330MW Rimini project, also in the Adriatic Sea, were submitted in March 2020.

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