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Green Innovation Fund Project Launches Floating Offshore Wind Turbine Demonstration Off Aichi Prefecture

In a landmark move towards renewable energy, C-Tech Corporation, Hitachi Zosen Corporation, Kajima Corporation, Hokutaku Co., Ltd., and Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. (MOL) have been appointed by The New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) to spearhead the “Floating Offshore Wind Turbine Demonstration Project” off the coast of Aichi Prefecture. This initiative is part of the Green Innovation Fund Project, aimed at reducing the cost of offshore wind power generation and accelerating the adoption of renewable energy in Japan.

The Japanese government has set an ambitious goal to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, with renewable energy playing a crucial role in this transition. Offshore wind power, particularly floating offshore wind turbines, is seen as a key component in this strategy. Unlike other countries with extensive shallow waters suitable for bottom-fixed turbines, Japan’s geographical landscape necessitates the development of floating offshore wind technology.

The collaborative effort between these five companies brings together a powerhouse of expertise. From power generation to floater manufacturing, and from general contracting to wind power maintenance and marine transport, each company will leverage its technological capabilities to develop a comprehensive floating offshore wind power generation system. The goal is to establish a commercially viable technology that can compete on the international stage by the fiscal year 2030.

The demonstration project, set to commence in July 2024 and conclude in March 2031, will take place off the coast of Tahara City and Toyohashi City in Aichi Prefecture. The planned demonstration unit will feature a semi-submersible foundation and a wind turbine with an output of over 15 MW. This project not only aims to showcase the potential of floating offshore wind power but also to drive significant cost reductions, making it a more competitive and attractive option for future energy generation.

By integrating their specialized knowledge, the consortium aims to achieve rapid technological advancements and cost reductions. This initiative is poised to pave the way for broader adoption of floating offshore wind power, which is crucial for Japan’s renewable energy ambitions. The successful implementation of this project could set a benchmark for similar endeavors worldwide, underscoring Japan’s commitment to innovation and sustainability.

As the world grapples with the urgent need to transition to cleaner energy sources, projects like this highlight the innovative approaches being taken to address these challenges. Floating offshore wind turbines offer a promising solution, particularly for countries like Japan with limited shallow coastal areas. The collaboration between C-Tech Corporation, Hitachi Zosen Corporation, Kajima Corporation, Hokutaku Co., Ltd., and Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. exemplifies how strategic partnerships and technological innovation can drive the renewable energy sector forward.

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The grant procedure with NEDO is set to be completed soon, after which the project will move into the active development phase. This marks a significant step towards reducing the carbon footprint and achieving a sustainable energy future for Japan. The success of this demonstration project could well be the catalyst needed to propel floating offshore wind power into the mainstream, offering a viable path to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

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