Oil and gas offshore construction firm OGN have been awarded a £640,250 grant by the Department of Energy and Climate Change for its move into offshore wind technology.
The boost from DECC’s Offshore Wind Component Technologies Development and Demonstration Scheme means the creation of up to 1000 long term jobs in the North East.
It will fund the building of a prototype steel jacketed foundation, Triton, which will be designed and developed by sister company Aquind at OGN’s Hadrian Yard site in Wallsend.
David Edwards, OGN chief executive, said: “We are delighted to have been selected for this grant. Government support is especially vital in the early stages of project development.
“The offshore wind energy market is crucial to Britain’s future energy needs and we will do our utmost to ensure that this grant takes the UK into an even stronger role as the lead player in this sector.
“This grant is important for the development of Aquind, and is fantastic news for Tyneside and the North East.”
Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker also commented: “The coalition is determined to drive ambitious green growth and this is putting our money where our mouth is.
“This cash shows we are delivering on our commitment to support innovation and offshore wind. Making wind turbines more efficient is common sense and will help bring down the costs making them more attractive to build and helping us increase the amount of electricity we get from clean, green sources.
“It’s great to see OGN North Sea Ltd stepping up to the challenge to ensure offshore wind energy is produced in the most cost effective way.”
The Triton technology will become an important solution to a sustainable and efficient offshore wind energy production.
150 Triton jackets a year will be produced at the purpose built Hadrian Yard in Wallsend, through more efficient manufacturing methods that will help to remove major supply chain bottleneck.
Graham Kennedy, OGN Chief Technical Officer and leader of the Triton project, added: “The offshore wind market is dynamic and requires an efficient and driven supply chain to support and deliver its objectives – our Triton design and technology has the potential to reduce the costs of offshore wind foundations by at least 25%, making wind energy a viable renewable energy source for the UK.”