Offshore wind

TechnipFMC, Bombora Team Up for Floating Wind and Wave Project

A demonstrator showcasing the potential of the technology is scheduled to come on line in late 2023.

The InSPIRE model marries a minimal floating structure with both wind and wave power- generation technology.
SOURCE: Bombora

TechnipFMC and wave-energy-technology company Bombora have formed a strategic partnership to develop InSPIRE, a floating wave- and wind-power project.

With engineering work initiated in November 2020, the partnership is developing a hybrid system using Bombora’s mWave technology.

The hybrid-system demonstrator will deliver 6 MW of combined floating wind and wave power, followed by Series 1 and Series 2 commercial platforms which are expected to deliver 12 and 18 MW, respectively.

Construction of the system is expected to begin later this year with commissioning of the demonstrator targeted for the fourth quarter of 2023.

InSPIRE is an acronym that stands for integrated semisubmersible platform with innovative renewable energy.

“Our core competencies and integration capabilities make us an ideal system architect and partner in developing renewable energy solutions alongside Bombora’s experience and unique, patented mWave technology,” said Jonathan Landes, president, subsea, at TechnipFMC. “We are delighted to work on a project that advances our commitment to the environment while contributing toward a more sustainable future.”

mWave is a membrane-style wave-energy converter that can be in both nearshore and offshore sites with good wave resources. It features a series of air-filled rubber-membrane-covered concave cell modules positioned below the ocean’s surface, transforming the submerged platform structure to capture maximum energy.

As waves pass over mWave, underwater pressure increases, causing each rubber membrane to compress sequentially, forcing air from inside the cells into a duct. Valves control a one-way air flow to the turbine—directly spinning a generator converting this rotation into electricity. After passing through the turbine, the air is recycled to reinflate each membrane in a continuous sequence. The power generated is transferred to the electrical grid via the same subsea cable used for the wind turbine.

Bombora, based in Pembroke Dock in West Wales, is currently completing the 1.5-MW mWave Pembrokeshire Demonstration Project in Wales, partly funded by $18.9 million from the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government. The company is working on furthering opportunities for the system in Lanzarote, Japan, Ireland, and Australia.

The 2021 Offshore Technology Conference to be held 16–19 August in Houston includes panel sessions "Offshore Wind: Supporting a Growing Industry" and "Bringing Offshore Wind to Scale: Offshore Energy at the Heart of the Transition."
See more related content in the OTC technical program here.