Abu Dhabi clean energy firm Masdar has acquired a 25 per cent stake in floating offshore wind farm Hywind Scotland from Norwegian multinational Statoil.
Under the agreement, Masdar will share the development risk with Statoil and cover 25 per cent of previous and future costs.
The 30MW Highwind Scotland project is located 15 miles off Scotland’s North East coast.
It is due to begin commercial operations in late 2017.
“When complete, Hywind Scotland will be the first floating wind farm in the UK and its novel technology offers vast, global potential. This pilot project aims to take advantage of Scotland’s huge offshore wind resource by operating in waters exceeding 100m depth, demonstrating cost efficient and low risk,” said Keith Brown, cabinet secretary for the economy and fair work for the Scottish Parliament.
“Major investments, such as this one made by Masdar, highlight the importance of continued investment in offshore wind, are a sign of increasing confidence within the sector, and position Scotland at the forefront of the global race to develop the next generation of offshore wind technologies.”
The Highwind Scotland project is described as the world’s first offshore floating wind farm and designed to demonstrate the commercially viability of the technology.
It consists of five 6MW floating wind turbines anchored on the seabed off the coast of Peterhead in Aberdeenshire, where the average wind speed is 10m per second.
Monopiles for the turbines are under construction and will be assembled at Stord in Norway in the summer before being shipped to Scotland.
Under the deal, Masdar and Statoil have also entered a collaboration agreement for clean energy technologies across several markets.
The two companies previously partnered for the 402MW Dudgeon offshore wind farm, which is due to come online in the second half of 2017.
Combined with the 630MW London Array, the three projects will bring Masdar’s gross renewable energy generating capacity in the UK to 10.06GW, enough to power 6,600 homes.