Nautical SUNRISE: World's Largest Offshore Floating Solar Power Development

Nautical SUNRISE Project to Facilitate Research and Development of The Largest Offshore Floating Solar Power Plant in the World


The Nautical SUNRISE project is set to support the world's largest offshore floating solar power installation. The € 8.4 million project, supported with € 6.8 million of the Horizon Europe programme, kicked off in December 2023 to execute research and development on offshore floating solar systems and its components. The outcomes of the project will enable the large-scale deployment and commercialization of offshore floating solar systems in the future, both as standalone systems and integrated into offshore wind farms.


This project is aiming to design, build, and showcase a 5 MW offshore floating solar system using the modular solution of Dutch floating solar company SolarDuck. With RWE providing the investment for the installation and deployment, the system is planned to be electrically integrated, certified, and located within RWE’s OranjeWind (Hollandse Kust West VII) wind farm off the west coast of The Netherlands.


Prior to the offshore deployment, the Nautical SUNRISE consortium will conduct extensive research and testing to ensure the reliability, survivability, electrical stability, and yield of offshore floating solar systems. A comprehensive scale-up plan will address the challenges and create opportunities to drive forward the commercialisation of offshore floating solar systems.


With sustainability in mind, Nautical SUNRISE is committed to consider the environmental impact and sustainability of offshore floating solar. The project will assess the environmental footprint, circularity, and full life cycle sustainability of offshore floating solar systems. This assessment will not only cover the demonstrator project but also include multiple GW-scale commercial projects, ensuring a comprehensive understanding of the technology's ecological implications.


The Nautical SUNRISE consortium is looking forward to paving the way for a new era in offshore renewable energy, contributing to a more sustainable future for generations to come.


“At WavEC Offshore Renewables, we're proud to be part of the Nautical SUNRISE project, a significant step forward in offshore floating solar technology. By teaming up with key partners and with the support of the Horizon Europe programme, our goal is simple: to drive innovation, sustainability, and scalability in offshore renewable energy. Our scope will be focused on practical contributions, such as mapping Europe's offshore solar potential, designing structural and environmental monitoring systems, optimizing maintenance strategies, and using advanced remote sensing technologies. Together, we are shaping a brighter, more sustainable future for generations to come, said Mário Alberto Vieira, WavEC’s Nautical Sunrise Project Manager.


DMEC CTO, Simon Stark, said: We are excited to coordinate the Nautical SUNRISE project as one of the flagship initiatives of offshore solar in Europe. Not only do we have the chance to address important knowledge gaps around the design and environmental impact of offshore solar. Together with RWE and the OranjeWind consortium we can do so in full alignment and integration with a commercial offshore wind park.


Nautical SUNRISE consortium partners

The project is made possible via a collaboration of its partners: project lead Dutch Marine Energy Centre (DMEC), SolarDuck, RWE, Blunova - a Carlo Maresca Group company, Bridon-Bekaert The Ropes Group, Deltares, Hasselt University (UHasselt), KU Leuven, Oxford PV, SINTEF Industry, SINTEF Ocean, The Catalonia Institute for Energy Research (IREC-CERCA), INESC TEC, and WavEC Offshore Renewables.


Find out more about the project and WavEC's contributions to it here.

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