System-level offshore wind energy and hydrogen generation availability and operations and maintenance costs

Lochhead, Robert and Donnelly, Orla and Carroll, James (2024) System-level offshore wind energy and hydrogen generation availability and operations and maintenance costs. Wind, 4 (2). pp. 135-154. ISSN 2674-032X (

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With the current trends of wind energy already playing a major part in the Scottish energy supply, the capacity of wind farms is predicted to grow exponentially and reach further depths offshore. However, a key challenge that presents itself is the integration of large producing assets into the current UK grid. One potential solution to this is green hydrogen production, which is being heavily researched in industry, with many concepts being investigated for large-scale purposes. However, the operations and maintenance (O&M) costs and availability of green hydrogen systems need to be quantified to ensure economical and technical viability, which is sparse in the available literature. The study presented in this paper investigated the availability and O&M costs of coupled wind–hydrogen systems by attempting to quantify the failure rates, repair times, repair costs and number of technicians required for key green hydrogen components. This study also utilised an O&M model created by the University of Strathclyde, which uses Monte Carlo Markov chain simulations to produce the O&M outputs. A number of assumptions were made throughout the study in relation to the O&M model inputs, and the baseline availability for the coupled wind–hydrogen system was 85.24%. Whilst the wind turbine still contributed a major part to the downtime seen in the simulations, the combined hydrogen system also contributed a significant amount, a total of 37%, which could have been due to the technology readiness levels of some the components included in the hydrogen system.