Assessing the impact of offshore wind siting strategies on the design of the European power system

David Radu, Mathias Berger, Antoine Dubois, Raphaël Fonteneau, Hrvoje Pandžić, Yury Dvorkin, Quentin Louveaux, Damien Ernst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper provides a detailed account of the impact of different offshore wind siting strategies on the design of the European power system. To this end, a two-stage method is proposed. In the first stage, a highly-granular siting problem identifies a suitable set of sites where offshore wind plants could be deployed according to a pre-specified criterion. Two siting schemes are analysed and compared within a realistic case study. These schemes essentially select a pre-specified number of sites so as to maximize their aggregate power output and their spatiotemporal complementarity, respectively. In addition, two variants of these siting schemes are provided, wherein the number of sites to be selected is specified on a country-by-country basis rather than Europe-wide. In the second stage, the subset of previously-identified sites is passed to a capacity expansion planning framework that sizes the power generation, transmission and storage assets that should be deployed and operated in order to satisfy pre-specified electricity demand levels at minimum cost. Results show that the complementarity-based siting criterion leads to system designs which are up to 5% cheaper than the ones relying on the power output-based scheme when offshore wind plants are deployed with no consideration for country-based deployment targets. On the contrary, the power output-based scheme leads to system designs which are consistently 2% cheaper than the ones leveraging the complementarity-based siting strategy when such constraints are enforced. The robustness of the reported results is supported by a sensitivity analysis on offshore wind capital expenditure and inter-annual weather variability, respectively.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number117700
JournalApplied Energy
StatePublished - Jan 1 2022


  • Asset siting
  • Capacity expansion planning
  • Offshore wind
  • Resource complementarity
  • Two-stage method

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • General Energy
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Building and Construction
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


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