Offshore wind power is when there are wind farms installed in a body of water instead of on land and these wind farms create power or electricity. Offshore wind power is not just about being in an ocean, offshore wind power can also be in lakes, coastal areas, as well as fixed bottom wind turbines, of course there are also deep water wind turbines as well, considered floating wind turbines.
Offshore wind turbines have different structures that depend on the needed stability and how deep the water is too. There are multiple solutions for this in the way of structures and these include:
There is the single column style that is six meters in diameter and goes into water that is no more than 30 meters deep, known as monopole turbines.
There are also bases that go into water that is 20 meters to no more than 80 meters deep, known as gravity base structures.
Another 20 meters to 80 meters deep structure is the tripod piled structure and there is also the tripod suction caisson structure too for water this deep.
Structures used by gas and oil companies, called conventional steel jacket structures used in 20 meters to 80 meter deep water also.
There are also floating wind turbines for water deeper than 80 meters.
Offshore wind turbines are less accessible than onshore turbines. This means that reliability is a legitimate concern when considering the offshore turbines. There are groups that take care of these offshore turbines and they can only be accessed by vessel or helicopter to get there. However, some of the offshore turbines have living quarters on the site for around the clock maintenance needs.
power can greatly reduce the need for traditional electricity and is much cheaper to produce as well. It is a renewable resource that costs very little once the structures are in place and they can power entire communities, businesses and other structures in an area. This type of power also reduces air pollution, greenhouse gases and limits the use of fossil fuels. They leave little to no environmental impact when they are in place and they do not disrupt water life in the same way as oil drilling and oil spills do.
The other benefit of offshore wind power is that the turbines are not as obvious and obtrusive as land turbines. Although land turbines do allow for farming around them and leave very little to no impact on the environment, offshore turbines do not seem as large and noise levels are not a concern due to distance. Depending on where the placement in the body of water, again fishing and boating is not interrupted, as well as marine life is not affected as well.