Robotics & Autonomous Systems

Find out more about our robotics and autonomous systems testing and validation facilities.

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Electrical Infrastructure Research Hub

The Catapult has appointed the University of Strathclyde and the University of Manchester to form the Electrical Infrastructure Research Hub.

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Automation & Engineering Solutions

Find out more about our work in robotics, autonomous systems and artificial intelligence.

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Stay Current

Dig deeper into the biggest issues facing offshore wind, wave and tidal energy with our series of Analysis & Insight papers.

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Innovation Challenges

Solving these technology innovation challenges will help drive down the cost of offshore renewable energy, with positive effects for the industry and UK economy. If your technology has the answer, get in touch via our contact form on the Innovation Challenges page.

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ANALYSIS & INSIGHT

Offshore Wind Subsea Power Cables: Installation, Operation and Market Trends

By the end of 2018, installed offshore wind power capacity will reach a total of 30.2GW, with 22.9GW of generation in Europe and 7.3GW across the rest of the world. The UK remains the global leader in offshore wind, with a total capacity of 6,385MW and an additional capacity of 3.2GW entering operation by 2020. As the industry’s generation capacity continues to grow, so does the need for developing reliable, high-capacity transmission cable technologies.

Subsea power cable failure is frequently reported as an issue for offshore wind farm operators. Such failures are reported to account for 75-80% of the total cost of offshore wind insurance claims – in comparison, cabling makes up only around 9% of the overall cost of an offshore wind farm. A lack of available data on cable failures led ORE Catapult to develop an interactive tool for internal use, which captures information about UK offshore wind projects and their power cables’ lifecycle from the installation to the operational phase.

This paper summarises some of the most pertinent insights on cable failures gleaned from the Catapult’s use of the tool and sets forth suggestions on how to improve knowledge-sharing in the offshore wind community to reduce the impact of future failures.

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