NorthWind logo with an underlay of unsteady sea

NorthWind’s first Annual Innovation Forum

NorthWind held its very first annual Innovation Forum for project partners. It was initially scheduled to be an in-person event at the Royal Garden hotel in Trondheim, but a new spike in the number of Covid-19 cases, and the measures adopted to counter it, forced us to change the course at the last minute and hold the NorthWind innovation forum as a digital event only.

We are sorry we could not meet in person, but we do think that our meetings must feel safe for all to participate. We thank all participants and speakers for the quick turn-around and for making the event a huge success, despite the changes. We look forward to seeing you in person next year!

The online event followed the same agenda as the planned physical event, with the same presenters and time schedule. The full functionality of Teams was used to allow for online Q&A and discussions.

The story so far

NorthWind started its work six months ago, and Centre Director John-Olav Tande opened the Innovation Forum by summarizing the Centre’s first few months of activity. Among other things he highlighted that the Centre already recruited its first 11 PhDs. He added that NorthWind has monthly webinars to share knowledge and that the Centre is already in contact with three different startup companies to explore innovations.

Keynote speakers

Following the Centre director’s introduction were presentations by invited keynote speakers Geir Olav Berg, NorthWind Board member and CTO and SVP Engineering at Aker Offshore Wind; Lars Oberbeck, Solar technology expert, TotalEnergies; Kristian Holm, Technical Director, Equinor; and Elling Rishoff, NorthWind Chair and Senior Vice President at DNV.

They all shared their thoughts about offshore wind development and the status of offshore wind in their respective companies. Among other things they focused on how we need research to focus on cost reduction and industrialization of floating offshore wind to meet the goals set by the EU Commission.

After lunch, contrabassist Oda Kristine Øygard Steinkopf opened the second half of the day with a beautiful musical number, before we went on to look at the first scientific results in NorthWind. Despite just being active for six moths, all work packages have produced innovations, from digital twins of wind farms to a tool for optimizing the construction off offshore wind farms.