The energy ship concept has been proposed as an alternative wind power conversion system to harvest offshore wind energy. Energy ships are ships propelled by the wind and which generate electricity by means of water turbines attached underneath their hull, The generated electricity is stored on-board (batteries, hydrogen, etc.) It has been shown that energy ships deployed far-offshore in the North Atlantic Ocean may achieve capacity factors over 80% using weather-routing. The present paper complements this research by investigating the capacity factors of energy ships harvesting wind power in the near-shore. Two case studies are considered: the French islands of Saint-Pierre et-Miquelon, near Canada, and Ile de Sein, near metropolitan France.
The methodology is as follows. First, the design of the energy ship considered in this study is presented. It was developed using an in-house Velocity, and Power Performance Program (VPPP) developed at LHEEA. The velocity and power production polar plots of the ship were used as input to a modified version of the weather-routing software QtVlm. This software was then used for capacity factor optimization using 10m altitude wind data analysis which was extracted from the ERA-Interim dataset provided by the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF). Three years (2015, 2016, and 2017) data are considered. The results show that average capacity factors of approximately 40% and 40% can be achieved at Ile de Sein and Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon with considered energy ship design.