With the increase of urbanization, large quantity of natural power resources are being used up rapidly, leaving grounds for scarcity or absolute energy deficiency at different places of the world in the future. In such scenarios when homes and industries are lacking in crucial power crisis, the artificial power link islands to be built on the North Sea is serving as the only hope to refill the empty power resources and fuel millions of industries and homes in the UK.
Announced on March 2017, The North Sea Wind Power Hub is the prospective project to build artificial islands in the middle of the North Sea to form a hub of a massive network of wind turbines that would generate a continuous energy source as a part of the European System of Sustainable Electricity. Let us check out some of the intriguing details about this project and its ultimate feasibility in the future.
- North Sea Wind Power Hub Consortium:
The artificial island in the North Sea that is proposed to be the hub of a mega series of wind turbines is supposed to cover an area of 2.5 square miles and comprise of an airport, a harbour, homes for staff and many solar panels. The developers of the project estimate that the North Sea Wind Power Hub can capture 1,00,00 megawatts of power which could serve about 80 millions of people in Europe.
Being a collaboration project, the major contributors are Transmission System operators, Tennet B.V. of the Netherlands, the Energinet.dk of Denmark and Tennet GmbH of Germany. They have come to a signed agreement to work together on the Wind Power Hub project which is estimated to finish and start running by 2050. This man made island hub would use cables to transmit energy to the mainland which is evaluated to become the primary source of energy in the Northern Europe.
- The Dogger Bank:
The Dogger Bank located on the northeastern side is a relatively shallow area of the North Sea which will serve as the prime site for the man made power link islands to provide a permanent warehouse for maintaining off-shore wind farms. This large scale project of connecting series of mega wind farms in the North Sea has become quite compelling in order to reduce the cost and complexity of the offshore wind farms.
The Dogger Bank is situated at the middle of the North Sea and is closely surrounded by England, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark and Norway. Shallow waters and strong winds are the perfect criteria for choosing the Dogger bank to construct the wind farms. Though the only drawback might come from the fisheries near the bank, which are known to be the main suppliers of cod and herring fish to the European markets.
- Achievements, Challenges and Feasibility:
The key advantage of the plans of artificial power link islands is that it shortens the distance between wind turbines and mainland. Thus, drastically reducing the cost of cables and also the chances of lateral damage over time. Power grids connected at major areas would then be used to distribute electricity in the mainlands. In this way, North Sea Power Hub can be used to centralize and standardize the production and distribution of energy over a massive region.
Moreover, the North Sea experiences some of the purest and strongest ocean winds which could make clean and sustainable energy sources to cumbersome the effects of greenhouse gas emission by a considerable amount.
Off-course the plan does have a few challenging edges like the fishery industry at the Dogger bank. Building a power hub at the bank would surely affect the active fishery industry, which might bounce back at the overall plan. Though, it is surely manageable owing to the vastness of the area where the project is supposed to be commenced.
According to the media reports, the estimated cost of the North Sea Wind Power hub project would cost around two billion dollars and with proper evaluation it is said that the project would be into commencement from 2030 to 2050. Marking a major breakthrough, the artificial island power hub project is truly innovative and a large scale solution to successfully eradicate the rising problem of energy crisis and deliver cost-effective and renewable energy to the European mainlands.