Wind Energy technology and knowledge exchange

In 2012 the Dutch wind energy sector – an alliance between the industry, R&D institutes and universities – adopted the Offshore Wind Energy Innovation Contract.

ECN’s Wind Energy research programme forms an integral part of the Offshore Wind Energy Innovation Contract; its budget for this innovation contract is entirely dedicated to joint research projects by the Dutch wind energy industry.

Research goals

In order to achieve the sector’s ambition to further strengthen the global Top 3 position of the Dutch offshore wind industry, five goals for innovation, scale-up, increased efficiency and reduced risk have been set for all research conducted under the Offshore Wind Innovation Contract. These goals for the offshore wind sector in the Netherlands are:

1. A cost-price decrease of 40% in 2020 compared to 2010
2. A six-billion-euro turnover in 2020
3. An immediate employment capacity of 12,500 jobs
4. An installed wind energy capacity of 2700 MW by 2020
5. An installed wind energy capacity of 4400 MW by 2023

Offshore wind demonstration site

Another important pillar to enable the Netherlands to reach the 2020 research goals is the development of an offshore testing and demonstration site – the Leeghwater project – where newly developed technologies and working methods can be tested. ECN plays an important role in the experimental verification of the innovative technologies demonstrations in this demonstration site.

ECN Wind programme lines

The R&D programme ECN Wind is focused exclusively on Offshore Wind Power Plants. All research is focused on reducing the cost of offshore energy or increasing the return on investment. The programme for 2014 is structured around seven R&D programme lines agreed by the sector in the Top Consortium for Offshore Wind Knowledge and Innovation (Offshore Wind TKI):

  • Support Structures
  • Optimization of the Wind Power Plant
  • Internal Electrical Network and Grid Connection
  • Transportation, Installation and Logistics
  • Operations and Maintenance
  • Socio-economic aspects of Wind Power Plant Development
  • Facilities and Testing

Meer information

You can read more about this subject on ECN’s Wind Energy expertise page.

Interested in more energy research programmes for knowledge and technology development? Read more in the following fields: