The first maritime wind of France inaugurated in Saint-Nazaire

Computer generated Image of a wind turbine similar to the project Floatgen. — Ideol

  • The wind Floatgen is floating and not fixed to the floor of the ocean as the most well-known projects.
  • Rising to 60 m high, it will be connected to the electricity grid, but will serve as a test for two years.


One hears about for years but no one had yet seen the light of day in France. The first offshore wind turbine in the country was inaugurated on Friday afternoon at Saint-Nazaire. Baptized Floatgen, the craft, the construction of which lasted a year and a half, will be installed in the next few days off the coast of le Croisic (Loire-Atlantique), about 20 km from the coast. Its commissioning will occur in early 2018.

Thanks to its blades rising to 60 m high, it will have a capacity of 2 MW, which is sufficient to cover the annual consumption of around 2,000 households. Original size : it is not a wind turbine fixed in the bottom of the ocean, as the majority of well-known projects, but of a wind turbine floating installed on a huge float in lightweight concrete.

A small detour to admire the first wind turbine floating French made in #SaintNazaire. Good wind #Floatgen !

— Frédéric expansion tank (@fredericvasse) October 12, 2017
The advantages of the floating

“There are more than 3,000 offshore wind turbines installed in the world, but we only has six floating units (four in Japan, one in Norway, one in Portugal) “, due in January Paul of the Guérivière, CEO ofIdéol, the start-up fraçaise, which bears the project is evaluated at € 25 million in partnership, including with Bouygues TP and the école Centrale de Nantes. A wind farm of five units has also seen the light of day this summer off the coast of Scotland.

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“Floating wind farms has the advantage of not having a constraint of depth, so to be able to go in search of strong winds offshore, no visual impact on the coastline. The potential is very important, ” says the CEO of Idéol.

Test grandeur nature two years

Once at sea, the float on the wind French will be anchored to 33 m of the bottom by lines of nylon. And then connected to the electrical grid by a high-voltage cable underwater already installed. The operation will not be commercial, it will be a full-scale test conducted for two years in view of future calls for tender that should be initiated by the French government.

In addition to this wind turbine floating, six commercial projects of wind farms at sea, with wind turbines attached to the bottom of the ocean, should see the light of day. The first three off the coast of La Baule, Fécamp (Seine-Maritime) and Courseulles-sur-Mer (Calvados), should be in service by 2021.