The proposed Supergen Wind Hub brings together leading wind energy academic research groups in the UK to address the medium term challenges of scaling up to multiple wind farms, considering how to better build, operate and maintain multi-GW arrays of wind turbines whilst providing a reliable source of electricity whose characteristics can be effectively integrated into a modern power system such as that in the UK. 

At a glance

The EU has a binding target of 20% of energy to come from renewables by 2020, with an associated CO2 emissions reduction target of 20% (relative to 1990) and a 20% reduction on energy usage by the same date; this is the so-called 20/20/20 target. The UK's target is for 15% of energy to be sourced from renewables by this date. For this target to be met, over 30% of electricity will need to be generated from renewables.

Because of environmental concerns, the development of onshore wind power in the UK is being constrained making the cost-effective and reliable offshore development ever more important. To increase offshore capacity by at least a factor of five in seven years, whilst minimising the cost of energy, presents very significant design, operational and logistical challenges. Within the above context and in the longer term, wind farms and wind turbines will be sited further offshore in deeper water and become bigger.