First Floating LIDAR in Korea
First Floating LIDAR in Korea

Offshore wind

Ulsan Floating Offshore Wind Project

23 June 2020

As the Korean government pursues its renewable energy goals, GIG commences development of a 1.5 GW floating offshore wind project in Ulsan, Korea.

Key data

1.5 GW

floating offshore wind capacity under development

The first

commercial floating LiDAR system installed in Korea 

500 MW

targeted for completion by 2023


"With its access to steel, ships, offshore plant expertise and port logistics, Ulsan city is perfectly positioned to deliver a fantastic offshore wind farm. Our ambition is for the Ulsan project to contribute to local economic development, revitalise local industries, create jobs and support the South Korean Government’s Renewable 3020 plan."

Woojin Choi
Associate Director of GIG Korea

Opportunity

In 2017, South Korea announced the Renewable Energy 3020 Implementation Plan (“RE3020”) setting a goal to produce 20% of its energy from renewable sources by 2030.

South Korea is currently the fourth largest coal importer in the world. Fossil fuel energy accounts for nearly two-thirds of the country’s electricity generation, while the share of nuclear power accounts for almost one-third1.

To reduce the country’s heavy reliance on coal imports and nuclear, the South Korean Government’s RE3020 plan targets an aggressive increase in its green energy power generation goals, from 8-9% to 20% by 2030 and 30-35% by 2040. 

The country also aims to have 13 GW of offshore wind installed by 2030. As a global leader in green economy, GIG is opening up new frontiers in Korea, a dynamic market with a significant, yet largely untapped, offshore wind resource. 

Actions

Upon securing three zones for the floating offshore wind project in waters off the coast of Ulsan, GIG deployed a floating LiDAR system to help determine the area’s suitability for development.

GIG has set up its first floating offshore wind project in Ulsan, the industrial powerhouse of South Korea. Ulsan is a prime location to develop floating offshore wind projects due to the city’s industry-leading shipyards, maritime expertise and port facilities.

In April 2020, GIG completed the installation of Korea’s first floating LiDAR. The LiDAR will collect critical wind resource data relating to wind speed and direction, and help addess the project’s impact on the surrounding environment and ecosystem.

During this early development phase, we are actively seeking the participation of local communities, stakeholders and academics to maximise positive economic and environmental impact. Korea Maritime University, Zen Limited and Vision Plus are currently working with the project, managing the design, stability testing, installation and operations of the floating LiDAR Bouy systems for offshore wind measurement.

We have also joined forces with Energy Infra Asset Management, a USD$1.6 billion Korean renewable energy fund manager, to support the financing of the Ulsan offshore wind project.

Impact

GIG has successfully deployed the first ever floating LiDAR system in Korea, the first step to developing 1.5 GW of floating offshore wind projects, located 50-60km off the coast of Ulsan City.

While floating LiDAR systems are commonly used across Europe and other advanced offshore wind markets, this is first time it has been used in Korea for a commercial offshore wind farm.

The Ulsan floating offshore wind project will now undergo a two-year wind measurement campaign. The development is being taken forward in three separate phases, with the first phase of 500 MW targeted for development completion in 2023. 

This also marks the first floating offshore wind project across GIG’s global pipeline and is a clear demonstration of GIG’s commitment to open up new frontier markets supporting the growth of the global green economy.

The LiDAR will collect wind resource data and its installation marks a critical step in the development of GIG’s first floating offshore wind project in South Korea, located off the coast of Ulsan City.


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