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Performance goals needed now for offshore wind turbine industry in US

Structural Integrity of Offshore Wind Turbines: Oversight of Design, Fabrication, and Installation, a new report from the National Research Council's Transportation Research Board, examines standards and practices that could be used to design U.S. offshore wind installations.

In order to develop offshore wind energy in the United States, a clear set of requirements is needed, the report says. As the U.S. currently lacks standards, the committee that wrote the report recommends that the U.S. Department of the Interior's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement (BOEMRE) immediately establish performance goals for structural integrity that project developers must meet.

Performance goals, rather than prescribed regulations, would encourage innovation in this nascent industry. The industry should then rely on a combination of international standards and guidelines developed by classification societies, as well as designs appropriate for U.S. waters and weather conditions, to develop projects that comply with the performance goals.

The committee also suggests roles for third-party reviewers and identifies expertise required to advise BOEMRE on the suitability of industry proposals.

The study was sponsored by BOEMRE. The National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine, and National Research Council make up the National Academies. They are private, nonprofit institutions that provide science, technology, and health policy advice under a congressional charter. The Research Council is the principal operating agency of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering. For more information, visit

Maureen O'Leary, Director of Public Information
Luwam Yeibio, Media Assistant
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Maureen O'Leary | EurekAlert!
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