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Unlocking Europe’s true offshore wind potential

PROMOTioN links technology research, validation, testing and the development of recommendations for meshed offshore grids. The coordinated approach to network infrastructure demonstrates key technologies and methodologies that could unlock the full potential of Europe’s offshore resources.

The challenges facing deployment of meshed offshore HVDC grids in the European Union encompass a variety of different aspects. The PROMOTioN (Progress on Meshed HVDC Offshore Transmission Networks) project has identified various necessary prerequisites including cost-effective and reliable converter technology; HVDC grid protection systems; Compact HVDC switchgear; and financial frameworks for infrastructure development. 

The absence of a coordinated deployment plan and a regulatory framework, as well as missing agreements between manufacturers, developers and operators of the grid also represent current obstacles to the deployment of a meshed HVDC offshore grid. 

The PROMOTioN project sets out to solve these challenges, with the ultimate aim of unlocking the full potential of Europe’s offshore resources. 

“Europe needs strong coordination and cooperation on planning processes beyond national borders to be able to tap into the potential of offshore renewable energy. The comprehensive work by PROMOTioN on offshore meshed grids provides valuable input to the Commission’s work”

  • Catharina Sikow-Magny,
  • EC Director,
  • Internal Energy Market

Managing the barriers 

The PROMOTioN project, led by DNV, is funded under the framework EU Horizon 2020 programme and involves 34 partners from 11 different European countries, who have collaborated intensively over the last 4 years. 

The organisational structure of the project has been based on 15 work packages, each looking into different aspects of the challenges. By connecting key stakeholders from industry, academia, consultancies and transmission system operators, PROMOTioN both provides a platform for interdisciplinary development and increases acceptance of required novel technologies and frameworks.

PROMOTioN has defined key issues which must be resolved to realise meshed offshore HVDC transmission networks and provides solutions for these. In broad terms, these address offshore HVDC network technology, planning, technology qualification and legal, regulatory, and economical aspects. 

The project also covers progress on meshed offshore HVDC transmission networks. The work has resulted in improved understanding of this technology through research, analysis, modelling and simulation and developed recommendations for implementation. 

DNV has also verified the compatibility of different types of technologies, developing a common interface, specifications and test requirements to allow them to be integrated into a functioning HVDC system. The results have been shared with standardisation bodies and spurred several new standardisation initiatives. 

The benefits 

Strong growth in electricity demand, and high penetration of variable renewable energy sources, will require significant expansions in transmission and distribution grids going forward. 

DNV firmly believes PROMOTioN can help to establish an efficient, holistic and cost-effective methodology for implementing it. The project work has addressed the technical, legal, regulatory, economic and financial barriers and the next step is to deploy in real life, demonstrate it, and we are at a far different level of readiness than when this project began four years ago. 

With the expansion of offshore wind showing no signs of slowing, it is anticipated that connected grids will play a vital role in future energy development and in doing so bring societal benefits in the form of greener, more reliable and affordable energy. 


Learn more about the PROMOTioN project

PROMOTioN - Progress on Meshed HVDC Offshore Transmission Networks

Unlocking Europe’s true offshore wind potential