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Vineyard Wind Turns to Bubbles to Reduce Noise from Offshore Wind Construction

Image courtesy Vineyard Wind

Vineyard Wind Turns to Bubbles to Reduce Noise from Offshore Wind Construction

Josh Guerrlich
Total Views: 4436
May 15, 2023

Vineyard Wind announced a program to test deploying an innovative bubble curtain to help reduce noise pollution during offshore wind foundation installation. The test will be run alongside ThayerMahan, which specializes in seabed surveys, acoustic mitigation and monitoring.

Bubble curtains are used to minimize the noise created by monopile installation. Using perforated hoses, condensed air is shot into the water in a ring around the monopile to form bubbles. 

Vineyard Wind expects to use the bubble curtains to construct nation’s first commercial-scale offshore wind project off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard. The installation will occur from the vessel Northstar Navigator, operating out of the Port of New Bedford. 

The deal will mark the first time a U.S.-based company provided a bubble curtain system for offshore wind. 

“Our agreement with ThayerMahan ensures that for the first time, a US-based company will perform the service of providing a bubble curtain mitigation system for an offshore wind project,” said Vineyard Wind CEO Klaus S. Moeller.  “We believe this is the first step of getting US firms experience in this new industry and sets the stage for rapid expansion in the coming years, particularly in our hometown of New Bedford.”

As part of the operation, ThayerMahan will move its headquarters to New Bedford. 

Vineyard Wind’s Industry Accelerator Fund will provide $5 million in funding for the operation, given by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center.

“We are thrilled to see ThayerMahan bring its innovative solutions and acoustic mitigation operations base to New Bedford, and we commend them for their commitment to building a local workforce. This is yet another first for Massachusetts’ offshore wind industry and cements our growing leadership,” said MassCEC CEO Jennifer Daloisio. “MassCEC is proud to support Vineyard Wind’s Industry Accelerator Fund, which is catalyzing local innovation and job creation in the Commonwealth’s growing offshore wind industry.”

Located 15 miles off the coast of Massachusetts, the Vineyard Wind 1 project will consist of 62 wind turbines generating 800 megawatts of electricity annually. The project is projected to create energy for 400,000 homes and businesses while removing 1.6 million metric tons of carbon emissions per year. 

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