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SFI-Sentre for forskningsdrevet innovasjon

BLUES - Floating structures for the next generation ocean industries

Alternative title: BLUES - Neste generasjons flytende havkonstruksjoner

Awarded: NOK 96.0 mill.

The purpose of SFI BLUES is to enable Norwegian ocean-based industry to develop floating structures for floating offshore wind, floating solar power plants, aquaculture, and coastal infrastructure. The world faces several industrial and societal challenges, and the ocean offers great opportunities to contribute to solutions. There is a global need for clean energy to meet the climate challenges. Changes in eating habits and population growth create a need for safe and healthy food sources. In the coastal zone, there is a need for flexible infrastructure for transport, as well as urban development. In SFI BLUES, key actors in research and industry work together to solve the scientific development needs. This will enable floating structures for future needs, which in turn will contribute to solving global challenges. The user partners represent value and supply chains across the markets of energy, food and infrastructure, and SFI BLUES therefore has great potential to contribute to increased value creation. The research activity in SFI BLUES has been significant in 2023. The centre has increased by three PhD students and one post doc researcher, in addition to one new associated PhD student. A total of 11 PhD students and five post doc researchers are now working in the centre. In addition to this, there are now 14 students completing their master's work. Several of these, work closely with the user partners. The focus areas for the centre are divided into four main areas. These are floating offshore wind, floating solar (FPV), new aquaculture structures and floating coastal infrastructure. These are referred to as “use cases” and are actively used to identify knowledge and technology gaps that are then used to design the research activity in the centre. This is for example described in detail in the centre's roadmap that was published earlier this year. The roadmap document is further supported by the centre's innovation document that address innovations from SFI BLUES. Some highlights from the research activity are given below. Access to statistical weather and wave data is important for designing and building robust and secure structures in the coastal zone. In many cases, access to this is easier said than done. The centre has therefore established a web portal that collects and processes such data from the Nora 3 and Nordkyst 800 databases for any given position. The service is open to everyone and has a web-based interface. The service is referred to as the “Metocean Data Portal” and generates Python code that can be used for data collection and further processing of marine data. The data base covers Norwegian seas and coastal areas. The output provided from this can be directly imported into design of structures in the coastal zone, such as new aquaculture facilities, ferry quays, port modules and other floating infrastructure. Developing new and innovative floating infrastructure, such as floating solar parks (FPV) and future offshore wind farms, poses challenges in understanding wave, current, and structural interactions. The complexity involves designing large, cost-effective structures using varied materials. The focus is on addressing gaps like numerical modelling, predicting wave loads, self-interaction between modules, and module connections. Efforts include combining materials like plastic, steel, and aluminium, with attention to predicting corrosion at steel-aluminium connections. Analysing future offshore wind farms with shared or individual turbine anchoring systems is currently complex. Current anchoring dynamics methods are either too heavy or not accurate enough. A simplified anchoring line model is in development to accurately represent floater motions, intending to be used with SIMA for calculating larger systems of floating wind turbines. The model allows for both bottom-contact mooring lines and mooring lines between multiple floating bodies. A numerical design tool is being developed to integrate soil, anchoring lines, and anchors, contributing to safer and more efficient anchoring solutions. This tool may also support innovative solutions, such as connecting multiple anchoring lines to the same anchor, potentially reducing costs for offshore wind farms. A demo is planned for presentation this fall, with beta testing scheduled for 2024.

BLUES is a new Centre for Research-Based Innovation which brings together key research, industry and public partners. The aim is to address the essential needs outlined below, enabling Norwegian ocean-based industries to provide floating solutions for present and future industrial and societal challenges. The world is facing several industrial and societal challenges, and the ocean provides great opportunities which can contribute to solving several of them. Due to the ongoing transition in the world's energy mix to meet the goals stated in the Paris agreement, the need for clean energy is now global. Changes in diets and an increase in the world's population also generate a need for safe and healthy food. Further, in a changing climate, requests for increased mobility, as well as shortage on area, introduce a need for resilient infrastructure in coastal waters for transportation as well as industrial and residential developments. Floating support structures have a huge potential for contributing to solving these challenges, but new applications of imply new needs and requirements to safety, sustainability, cost, function and operation. This leads to structures where we have limited experience. These structures will be diverse, but they have essential needs in common: - To understand their requirements to function, safety, cost, operation and sustainability, in order to develop optimized solutions. - To develop numerical and experimental high-quality validated design tools. - To base the design on reliable descriptions of the marine environment. - To understand the interaction between the environment (wind, waves, current) and structures. - To develop structures with sustainable, safe and cost-efficient materials. - To develop mooring systems and anchors to keep the floating structures in position. To unlock the potential of novel floating structures, we need to understand the requirements of the applications, the associated technology gaps and knowledge needs.

Publications from Cristin

Funding scheme:

SFI-Sentre for forskningsdrevet innovasjon

Thematic Areas and Topics

Digitalisering og bruk av IKTAvanserte produksjonsprosesserAvanserte produksjonsprosesserBruk av avansert produksjonsteknologi (ny fra 2015)LTP3 IKT og digital transformasjonDigitalisering og bruk av IKTPrivat sektorHavbrukDelportefølje InternasjonaliseringLTP3 Nano-, bioteknologi og teknologikonvergensPortefølje Muliggjørende teknologierLTP3 Miljøvennlig energi og lavutslippsløsningerInternasjonaliseringBransjer og næringerFiskeri og havbrukHavbrukHavbruks- og foredlingsteknologiMiljøvennlig energiMarinHavbrukLTP3 Muliggjørende og industrielle teknologierInternasjonaliseringInternasjonalt prosjektsamarbeidBransjer og næringerMaritim - NæringsområdePolitikk- og forvaltningsområderFiskeri og kystMarinLTP3 Marine bioressurser og havforvaltningKlimarelevant forskningBransjer og næringerEnergi - NæringsområdePortefølje Mat og bioressurserPolitikk- og forvaltningsområderSamferdsel og kommunikasjonLTP3 Et kunnskapsintensivt næringsliv i hele landetBransjer og næringerTransport og samferdselLTP3 Bærekraftige byregioner og transportsystemerTransport og mobilitetMaritimMiljøvennlig energiFornybar energi, vind og havAnvendt forskningGrunnforskningPolitikk- og forvaltningsområderEnergi - Politikk og forvaltningLTP3 Høy kvalitet og tilgjengelighetLTP3 Fagmiljøer og talenterDelportefølje KvalitetBransjer og næringerLTP3 Klima, miljø og energiPolitikk- og forvaltningsområderNæring og handelMaritimMaritime muligheter i havnæringeneDelportefølje Et velfungerende forskningssystemPortefølje Banebrytende forskningLTP3 Hav og kystLTP3 Havteknologi og maritim innovasjonPortefølje ForskningssystemetLTP3 Styrket konkurransekraft og innovasjonsevnePortefølje InnovasjonPolitikk- og forvaltningsområderPortefølje Energi og transport