IEA announces Topical Expert Meetings on wind energy

©IEA Wind

The International Energy Agency Wind Technology Collaboration Programme (IEA Wind TCP) has announced the dates of the next two Topical Expert Meetings.

The Wind TCP supports the work of independent, international groups of experts that enable governments and industries from around the world to co-operate on wind energy research, development, and deployment (RD&D). It provides high quality information and analysis to member governments and commercial sector leaders by addressing technology development, deployment and its benefits, markets, and policy options.

The Topical Expert Meetings (TEM) of the Wind TCP aim to generate conversation about new technical and scientific developments and information needs. They are also an important catalyst for starting new research tasks within IEA Wind.

1. The first meeting will take place in Porto, Portugal on 1-3 June, and discuss the challenges and opportunities linked to floating supports, which represent the only feasible technical approach to harnessing offshore wind energy in high depths. More info.
2. The second meeting will take place Zurich, Switzerland on 30 November – 1 December, and discuss cohabitation issues with civil and military aviation systems. More info.

For more information and registration, please visit the website of the IEA Wind TCP.

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European Commission prepares for Horizon Europe

Horizon Europe banner HQ ©European Commission

Now that EU negotiators have reached an agreement on Horizon Europe, the EU’s framework programme for research & innovation for 2021-027, The European Commission has taken the first steps towards the implementation of the programme. Earlier in May European Commission officials have met with member states’ representatives to discuss lessons learned from Horizon 2020 and to get a first feedback on the possible specific priority areas for the new funding programme.

Strategic planning

The meeting was mostly focussed on the “global challenges and industrial competitiveness” pillar of the programme. This pillar is the largest of the three Horizon Europe pillars with an estimated budget of more than €52 billion, more than half the entire Horizon Europe (estimated at €94.1 billion).

The research priorities will be defined in a strategic planning process which is due by the end of 2019.The process will give stakeholders from academia and industry a chance to provide feedback. The European Commission will circulate several updated versions of the strategic planning document from June onwards.

The European R&I days (24-26 September) will play a pivotal role in the entire consultation process. More information


One of the main new features of the programme, the large transversal research & innovation missions will need to be defined during the strategic planning. Whilst EU policymakers agreed on the 5 thematic areas, many of the details are still unclear.

To help determine the scope, objectives and management of these missions the European Commission will establish 5 mission boards, one for each thematic area. Experts can apply for a seat on the mission board via an “expression of interest”. Each mission board will have a maximum of 15 seats and aims to attract high level individuals from a variety of stakeholders (industry, academia, policymakers…).

The deadline for submitting applications is 11 June 2019. More information

New structure

In addition, the Directorate-General Research & Innovation will reorganise its departments to better implement the new structure of the framework programme. The number of directorates has been reduced from 11 to 9 and they will have cover a wider range of topics.

The new structure will officially take effect in June, but here is already a sneak preview.


ETIPWind signs joint paper on strategic planning and missions in Horizon Europe

© Karsten Würth

ETIPWind, together with 6 other European Technology & Innovation Platforms and EUREC, has submitted a joint position on new aspects of the Horizon Europe programme.

Horizon Europe will be the successor programme to Horizon 2020 and will be the EU’s research and innovation funding programme for the period 2021-2027. Whilst the legislative files to establish the programme are still being discussed by the European Parliament, the Council of the EU and the European Commission, the programme will feature new elements including a “Strategic Planning” and “Missions”.

The strategic planning will be a consultation exercise in which the specific research and innovation areas that will be eligible for funding will be defined. For ETIPWind and the other signatories, the strategic planning should be more inclusive, transparent (inclusion feedback on input provided)and give clear guidelines for the Work Programme.

“Missions” are transversal challenges around which large parts of society can gather. They are easy to understand headlines for specific objectives that the EU wants to achieve by a certain date. The signatories support possible missions on “climate-neutral and smart cities” and on a “net-zero-carbon economy by 2050”. However, the adoption of missions should be in line with the current SET Plan governance and not create a new layer of governance in the field of energy research & innovation.

The signatories, six ETIPs in renewable energy, ETIP-SNET and EURECs have examined what these new elements might entail for governance around European energy technology policy. The result is a concise position paper.


Joint letter on climate earmarking in Horizon Europe

©European Commission

WindEurope, together with other trade associations and technology platforms on renewable energy, has sent a letter to the Council of the European Union ahead of this week’s Working Party meetings on the Horizon Europe programme. The signatories call on the council representatives to support a more robust target of 35% for climate related research & innovation in the upcoming framework programme. Climate mainstreaming deserves clear and consistent governance. Innovation policy must supply new technology to bring down the investment cost of decarbonising the European energy system.

Read the joint letter here.

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IRENA launches report on integration of variable renewables


Innovative solutions for integration of renewables

On Tuesday 19 February IRENA, the International Renewable Energy Agency, launched its latest report entitled Innovations for a renewable future: solutions to integrate variable renewables. See the full report.

The report offers a holistic overview of innovative solutions to integrating high shares of variable renewable energy in the energy system. It is presented as a guide or policy toolbox for policymakers across the world and contains 11 solutions to facilitate the integration of variable renewables.

The 11 solutions are based on various combination of 30 different innovations in enabling technologies, business models, market design and system operation. IRENA will launch a briefs on each of the 30 innovations. You will be able to find all the briefs here.

According to IRENA electricity will provide 55% of energy demand in 2050, more than double of today. With regard to power generation, variable renewables would account for 60% of power generation with onshore wind and solar PV providing 36% and 22% respectively.

In the report IRENA estimates that investments in facilitating the integration of variable renewables would amount to 18 trillion dollar by 2050. Also, investments in renewable power generation would total 22 trillion dollar by 2050.


High level panel discussion

The report was presented during panel discussion hosted by Miguel Arias Cañete Commissioner for Climate and Energy, Dominique Ristori Director General of DG Energy and Adnan Amin Director General of IRENA. Notable panelists included Aidan Cronin ETIPWind chair, Walburga Hemetsberger, CEO of SolarPowerEurope and Laurent Schmitt Secretary General of ENTSO-E.

After the presentation of the IRENA report the panelists presented their views on the future energy system and the innovations it will require. Aidan Cronin (ETIPWind) highlighted that more research is needed to support the electrification of heating and industrial processes and to decarbonise hard to abate sectors such as marine shipping.

Mr Cronin particularly highlighted the need for new improved electro-chemical production methods for ammonia as a high impact solution. In addition, grid infrastructure on- and offshore needs to be strengthened and enlarged to cope with the volumes of renewable energy capacity that is to be built in the next decades.

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ETIPWind Executive Committee kicks off 2019 activities



On 15 January the ETIPWind executive committee teamed up with additional wind energy experts for a one day workshop to start activities of the new 3 year period of ETIPWind. The meeting took place in Trondheim, Norway and was a prelude to the 2019 EERA DEEPWIND conference which brought together industry and academic experts in the field of offshore wind energy research.

Click to see the DEEPWIND 2019 presentations .

At the workshop more than 40 participants took part in the various break-out sessions to discuss technology pathways, each one directly linked to one of the 5 pillars of the 2018 Strategic Research & Innovation Agenda (SRIA). All the groups compiled and ranked the priorities according their criticality (high to low) and time frame (short to long term).

The secretariat will consolidate the workshop findings and circulate them to the participants for review and comments. The consolidated results will be discussed by the executive committee on 21 February. The conclusions of this meeting will be made uploaded to the ETIPWind website.

The ETIPWind workshop was the first step in the development of the ETIPWind Technology Roadmap. This roadmap will take an in-depth look at the priorities spelled out in the 2018 SRIA. The roadmap will outline which priorities and actions need coordinated support on EU level and which can be borne by private and/or national investments. This will allow ETIPWind to highlight those areas where the EU added value is highest.

Publication is due in June 2019. See the indicative timeline of the work process below.



Research and Innovation vital to sustain wind energy cost reductions and keep industry in Europe

2018 SRIA

As the EU negotiates the details of its next flagship research and innovation programme – Horizon Europe – channelling resources to the right places will be critical to decarbonise and continue growing Europe’s economy. The Technology and Innovation Platform ETIPWind has released a series of recommendations on where the EU should focus in Research and Innovation funding in wind energy.

The €94bn Horizon Europe research and innovation programme will identify key challenges and priorities for research and innovation funding from 2021-2027. It is critical that a significant portion is allocated to climate action in general and to the ‘Climate, Energy & Mobility’ challenge in particular.

To mitigate the worst effects of climate change, Europe’s economy must decarbonise rapidly. It’s doing pretty well on getting renewables into electricity. But getting more renewable electricity into industrial processes, heating and transport will be vital. Renewables will need to grow exponentially to meet the challenge of renewables-based electrification. Wind energy, for example, could double to reach 323 GW by 2030, providing nearly 30% of Europe’s electricity.

This entails a transformation of the European energy system. To deliver on this, the EU must put its Research and Innovation money behind projects that support integrating large shares of wind energy on the grid. It needs to support cost reduction notably by further improving Operation and Maintenance. It needs to look ahead to next generation technologies. And it needs to focus on offshore wind beyond just the wind turbine itself (‘balance of plant’) and help drive the development of floating offshore wind.

Crucially, the Research and Innovation effort needs to go to incremental innovation, notably in onshore wind, as well as longer term research. The EU is able to compete in mature industries such as aviation and automotive because of its sustained effort in Innovation, the same logic should apply to renewables.

The European wind energy industry is facing increasing competition from Asia. This poses a direct threat to Europe’s global leadership in renewables. European content in global installed wind energy capacity has been declining since 2011. Any further decline risks putting Europe’s 262,000 wind jobs at risk. A stronger European wind industry could double its contribution to EU GDP by 2030.

WindEurope Chief Policy Officer Pierre Tardieu said:Europe’s wind industry is already investing €1bn per year in cutting-edge technologies to drive down costs. Remaining competitive in the global market also requires targeted public Research and Innovation funding. Europe’s economy needs to decarbonise rapidly. Renewable energy will grow exponentially to help us get there but Asia has already taken a flying start in renewables technology. All this means the need for a forward-thinking research agenda is stronger than ever. Business as usual means Europe will lag behind and miss out on the economic benefits of leading the energy transition that would unlock up to 569,000 jobs in wind alone.

ETIPWind Chair Aidan Cronin said: “Renewables must be a key area for public support as there is still massive cost reduction potential in wind and as a green clean carbon free solution it is too vital to ignore. The cost of offshore wind could fall by 35% by 2025. Even in onshore wind, which is often wrongly described as ‘mature,’ costs could fall by 26%. Much of wind’s costs are related to making it adhere to an already existing non-flexible power system so we need to electrify many new sectors and develop the technology to drive this. That’s why targeted support is so crucial. It will be vital in reducing the time to market of new technologies and training tomorrow’s engineers and scientists who will help make the energy transition happen and keep Europe on par with its foreign peers and a leader in green technologies.

The European Technology and Innovation Platform on Wind Energy run by WindEurope, brings together Industry and Academia to formulate the priorities of the Wind sector for Research and Innovation. Its Advisory Group is made up of the Chief Technology Officers of all the top companies in the European Wind Industry. The Platform informs the EU-decision-making process on Research and Innovation, including the ongoing discussion on Horizon Europe or the implementation of the Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET Plan).

Download the report

CTOs meet Patrick Child shortened

Industry CTOs discuss Research & Innovation priorities with the European Commission

On Wednesday, 29 November, the ETIPWind Advisory Group, comprised of wind energy industry CTOs, met in Amsterdam to discuss the strategic research & innovation (R&I) objectives and challenges for the wind energy sector. They were joined in this policy discussion by deputy Director-General Patrick Child from the European Commission (DG RTD).

During the meeting the group pointed out to Mr. Child that continuous EU support on R&I is needed to retain the sector’s competitiveness vis-à-vis conventional energy generation, to facilitate system integration and to further drive down the costs of wind energy. The CTOs specifically called for EU support on demonstrations of the technical capabilities of wind power generators to provide grid services on big data solutions for operations and maintenance and on innovative storage solutions. In addition, they presented the ETIPWind brochure When Wind Goes Digital, which provides a clear and synthetic overview of the potential of digitalisation in the wind energy sector.

The deputy Director-General welcomed the suggestions from the CTOs. He understood the impact of increasing global competition on the European industrial base and assured the group that the European Commission is committed to retain Europe’s technology leadership in wind energy.

digitalisation bigger

ETIPWind Presents: When Wind Goes Digital

ETIPWind has recently released its latest publication, a brochure entitled When Wind Goes Digital. Lately the topic of digitalisation has received significant attention both from public officials and the wind energy sector itself. Digitalisation will be a game-changer for most heavy industries, including wind energy. Therefore, it is important to understand what digitalisation can mean for our industry. To this end ETIPWind produced a brochure highlighting the vast potential of digitalisation in the wind energy sector: When Wind Goes Digital.

This brochure provides a clear and synthetic vision of the solutions and opportunities offered by digitalisation. It visually maps out the possibilities that exist for the wind energy sector, taking advantage of the digitalisation policy buzz. Policy makers need to see that wind energy is one of the primary green energy sources where digitalisation can provide great added value. This potential has however largely been neglected compared to that of other renewable energy sources, for instance solar PV.

The brochure When Wind Goes Digital aims to create a new awareness among policy makers of all the potential of digitalisation for wind. In addition, it also provides the sector itself with a clear and concise framework to discuss digitalisation.

Download the report     Watch the presentation


EUSEW 2017: The ETIPWind story event

Supporting Europe’s transition towards clean energy for all

©European Commission

Join us in Brussels to hear what developments are underway in wind energy research and innovation, and how they can impact Europe’s future energy system. Meet the wind R&I community and discuss these issues on Tuesday 20 June 2017, from 14:30 to 16:30, at WindEurope, 80 rue d’Arlon, in Brussels.

Register here. (Attendance is free, but registration is necessary as space is limited.)




Introduction (5’)

  • Aidan Cronin, Chairman, ETIP Wind steering committee (confirmed)



The ETIP Wind story – supporting Europe’s transition towards clean energy for all (30’)

How wind energy is contributing to EU sustainable energy goals (the jobs, the security, the sustainability…), how it got where it is and what more could wind deliver if we deliver on our R&I priorities.

  • Mike Anderson, RES / ETIP Wind advisory board – the wind industry journey (confirmed)
  • Mattias Andersson, DTU – policy perspective (confirmed)



Examples of R&I priority areas, and the transformations they could bring/enable (2×15’)


Energy Management Systems: enabling the large scale integration of clean energy sources
  • Adrian Timbus, Global Technology & Solutions Manager – ISI Smart Grids & Wind, ABB (confirmed)


Real-time analytics and big data for Operations & Maintenance: driving costs down to make clean energy even more affordable
  • speaker to be confirmed




Introduced by discussant(s) from the European institutions:

  • Mark van Stiphout, Deputy Head of Unit Research and Innovation, DG Energy, European Commission (confirmed)
  • Siim Meeliste, Counselor for Energy, Permanent Representation Estonia (confirmed)



Conclusions & wrap-up

Aidan Cronin, Chairman, ETIP Wind steering committee

Followed by networking drinks in collaboration with LeanWind.

Register here. (Attendance is free, but registration is necessary as space is limited.)