Japan field-tests floating wind turbine


There can be no doubt “green” energy is becoming more and more important in Japan. And just like the many other inventions in this area, I am sure this newest invention that’s potentially beneficial for the environment can one day make its way outside Japan, too: A floating wind turbine that’s currently in prototype mode and is 12.5m tall (5.5m are above the surface).

The turbine is being jointly developed by researchers from Sasebo Heavy Industries, Toda, and Kyoto University. The big idea it is to avoid the high costs involved in fixing wind turbines to the seabed. One area where the turbines could be put to good use according to the researchers is out in the ocean, simply because of the strong winds to be found there.

The current version of the turbine is being tested in Sasebo in Southern Japan, with the researchers hoping to achieve 2,000kW for the finished version. It will be ten times larger, too, and the technology is supposed to be commercially available by 2012 or 2013. (As no picture of the floating turbine is available yet, the picture shows a conventional model.)

Via Moneyzine [JP]