The GICON® SOF Floating Foundation for Offshore Wind Turbines: Innovation and Opportunity for Offshore Wind Farms

Final tank tests to be conducted at the Maritime Research Institute Netherlands (MARIN) as preparation for a full scale GICON® SOF pilot plant installation

Rostock/Dresden (Germany), June 10th, 2013

Europe's ambitious climate and energy targets are key drivers behind renewable energy expansion. As early as 2020, one third of Europe's power requirements should be generated from renewable energy. Giant offshore wind parks are being developed along the coasts to produce tremendous amounts of green power. The offshore wind power sector is seen as a major renewable energy growth market. Latest expert studies are estimating Europe's operating offshore wind power generation capacity to be at 40 GW by 2020. The global offshore wind investment by 2020 will reach Euro 130 billion. However, the industry faces major challenges: wind parks are increasing in size as well as distance from shore and are increasingly built in deeper water. Conventional foundations such as monopiles, gravity foundations, tripods and jackets are applicable for water depths up to 50 meters; sites with deeper water require different solutions. The need to substantially reduce construction and operating costs applies to all projects in all water depths.

Offshore Wind Farms are one of the largest market opportunities ever seen. But the sector also requires innovative technology solutions to address the various challenges. The GICON® SOF (Schwimmendes Offshore Fundament = German for Floating Offshore Foundation) is such an innovative technology with pivotal advantages compared to conventional foundations: The GICON® SOF is deployable in water depths from 20 to 700 meters. Another key advantage is the ability to tow the SOF with turbine to the deployment site where it can be installed without special installation jack up vessels and thus nearly weather independent. Compared to other floating foundation technologies the GICON® SOF is the only solution with stability comparable to conventional foundations: there is no pitch and toss which would create additional demands on the turbine.

As part of the development GICON is planning construction, commissioning and operation of a 1:1 full scale fully functional pilot plant in the German Baltic Sea, off the coast of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, to be installed in 2014.

Functionality, usability and load capacity of the GICON® SOF were confirmed during tank tests of a 1:25 scale model at the Hamburg Ship Model Basin (HSVA) in 2012 with wave tests conducted for transport and operational mode scenarios. The anchored structure was exposed to various wave heights and wave directions, including the equivalent of a 20 meter rogue wave. The structure's response and performance even under such harsh conditions surpassed all expectations. GICON is therefore one of the leading developers of floating foundations worldwide. Video impressions of the 2012 HSVA tests are available at

Final wind and wave tests will be conducted June 17th – 26th, 2013 at the Maritime Research Institute Netherlands (MARIN), prior to the construction of the full scale pilot..

Part of this series of experiments is a demonstration event on June 24th, 2013 from 11am – 2pm where the current planning and development status will be presented to a selected industry audience.

We herewith cordially invite you to attend this event.

R.S.V.P. by June 19, 2013
We kindly ask for your understanding that due to security reasons the MARIN security staff requires each attendee (even the media) to be registered with full name prior to the event.

Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Jochen Gromann
CEO, GICON® Grossmann Ingenieur Consult GmbH

Presentation of the GICON® SOF and the current test results
Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Jochen Gromann

Demonstration and explanation of the latest scale model experiments at the Offshore Test Basin
Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Jochen Gromann
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Frank Dahlhaus


MARIN - Maritime Research Institute Netherlands
MARIN main office Wageningen
Visitor Entry
6708 PM Wageningen
The Netherlands

For additional information and inquiries please contact
Linda Mathew – Public Relations
GICON Gromann Ingenieur Consult GmbH
Tiergartenstrae 48
01219 Dresden
Phone +49 351 47878-738
Fax +49 351 47878-78

About GICON®

GICON® is an independent consulting and engineering company, operating in Germany as well as internationally. 300 full time employees and 150 contracted experts offer services to global clients in numerous countries in line with the respective national standards. Branches throughout Germany are operating close to the German customers; GICON also has offices in ca. 10 different countries. The interdisciplinary and experienced team provides comprehensive and state-of-the-art consulting and planning services for a large variety of industry sectors.

GICON is also heavily engaged in R&D in co-operation with many domestic and international research institutions. This ensures a constant flow of innovations available to clients as well as actively impacting the state of technology. Currently the company is involved in ca. 35 R&D projects, most of them in co-operation with ca. 30 domestic and international universities and research institutions.

Further information is available at

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