What is being billed by its backers as a revolutionary wind turbine design for offshore use is quietly being developed by a small company in the Netherlands calling itself 2-B. Although 2-B is keeping a low profile over its plans, one of its investors, Truffle Capital, says the concept is focused on reducing overall lifecycle costs, taking into consideration not just the capital cost of the equipment, but also installation and operational costs. Preliminary engineering analysis shows the new technology should result in significant cost of energy (COE) savings, it adds. Truffle Capital, an independent private equity firm based in Paris, has invested EUR 1.5 million in 2-B. Irish wind project developer Mainstream has put in another EUR 1 million (page 38). According to Truffle, 2-B was founded in 2007 by Herbert Peels and Mikael Jacobsson, both of whom have worked in large international wind companies. Peels was formerly vice president and general manager of Enron Wind and later GE Wind Europe, while Jacobsson was the CEO of offshore wind development company Airicole/EDF. Peels says that the financial backing will help 2-B "reach our goal of offering a new approach to the offshore environment." From Truffle Capital, Jean-Francois Fourt comments: "With the global market for offshore wind entering a period of extraordinary, sustained growth, wind power developers and owners are seeking ways to improve their returns and reduce risks. The simplicity of design, improved economics and breakthrough technology of the 2-B concept will help drive down COE in the offshore environment."
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