The Need for Anchor Innovation
The Department of Energy (DOE) and Triton Anchor determined that the current floating wind sector is contending with antiquated mooring and anchoring options that are mature, but not realistic for large scale commercial wind farms.
Drag anchors on catenary style moorings are a default option that work on demonstrator units but entail an unrealistic vast spiderweb of overlapping mooring chain in a full farm. This leads to complex field infrastructure with high-risk installation and operational entanglement adding up to permitting and local community approval obstacles. Additionally, local fishing and marine organism farming industries are not able to operate in the same field due to mooring lines spanning across the water column and the seafloor.
Driven pile anchors produce extreme underwater noise levels that result in burdening marine mammal monitoring requirements and expensive noise mitigation equipment, and as well as costly schedule constraints that are unrealistic for a large farm development.
Suction Piles, although preferred to drag and driven pile anchors due to accurate and near silent installation, are limited to mostly clay-based soils due to capacity limitations in sand. Large suction pile anchors are impressive feats but also require large costly quantities of steel and expensive logistics to move anchors from production facilities to wind farm locations, further increasing their high costs and reducing their viability as a solution for the future of offshore wind.
The Triton Anchor is a low cost, silently installed, modular anchoring system that works for catenary, shared, taut, and TLP moorings.
With minimal environmental impact, the Triton Anchor is the preferred solution for green field development.
Modular anchor design for all platforms
With a flexible design layout that can be scaled to fit different floating units, the Triton Anchor is comprised of helical piles, a skirt or caisson, and a template.
The Triton Anchor can be sized to any wind platform design (spar, semi-submersible, tension leg, buoy, MRE) and any mooring configuration (catenary, semi-taut, taut), as well as shared anchor systems.
Unique for the Triton Anchor is the ability to integrate any mooring connecter.
The Anchor Solution
Triton’s anchor and installation solution target each of the weaknesses found in the current anchor portfolio.
Triton’s patent pending anchoring system works by using groups of highly efficient helical anchors that provide significant benefit in holding capacity in combination with an embedded caisson.
Helical anchors provide resistance in bearing rather than friction, making them quite efficient in regards to capacity per weight of steel, among other benefits. This benefit directly translates to reduced CAPEX by way of less required steel for anchor manufacturing.
A helical anchor is considered one of the most effective and efficient means of anchoring in soils for two primary reasons:
It resists mooring loads through bearing on the helix plate(s) and is therefore not as susceptible to cyclic degradation in capacity
Helical plates overcome the difficulty in achieving precise deep embedment into the seabed, which can be a challenge for many anchors particularly in cohesionless soils (sand).
Caisson technology is well defined and proven in offshore anchoring applications. Triton’s innovative system combines a caisson (skirt) with helical piles for maximum vertical and horizontal holding capacity. Instead of requiring suction or hammering for installation, Triton utilizes an innovative silent installation tool to screw in each helical pile. As each pile is embedded, the skirt is pulled into the seafloor leaving only the mooring connection exposed.
1. Jardine and Standing et. al. 2012
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The Triton Anchor System:
Achieves breakthrough cost savings by lowering manufacturing (~40% reduction) and installation costs (~25% reduction)
Can be applied to any offshore wind platform or mooring configuration making it a flexible solution for the growing market
Minimizes acoustic impact on the environment and sea life
Can be easily removed for decommissioning planning
Is scalable and applicable to many types of subsea foundations beyond offshore wind, such as other renewable energy systems