Visualizing Energy

7 August 2017.


Bringing to light new renewable energy projects is a way of documenting the energy transition in action. I would not have been able to cover the construction of the Luchterduinen offshore wind farm without the assistance of Eneco, the power company that partly owns it. They arranged for me to sail to exclusive zones in the North Sea and took me to the Vestas site in Denmark where the turbines are shipped on oddly-shaped vessels. My ambition is to discover and cover projects leading the energy transition around the world.

My passion for the energy transition derives from my worries about climate change and environmental pollution. Therefore it fills me with great pleasure to see projects like the one led by Greenpeace in Switzerland, where students are involved in building solar roofs. This is about creating awareness, fostering team work for a higher purpose while transferring knowledge efficiently with a long-term positive effect in people’s lives.

The creativity and inventiveness in the field of renewables are astonishing, such as the beautifully-designed solar trees along high- ways, solar cells in bicycle lanes and floating solar panels at a sewage sludge reservoir. It’s a pleasure to capture these innovations as well as the bigger projects. With flood- ing rains hitting werstern Europe at the time of publishing this VIEWS, my motivation to continue this series is growing with every thunderstorm.

  • Building the foundation of a massive onshore wind turbine with a height of 200 meters in Meer, Belgium, for Storm Windpower.
  • Shipping of wind blades for ENECO's offshore wind farm Luchterduinen at MHI Vestas in Esbjerg, Denmark. The blades are loaded on a specially-designed vessel for transporting and constructing offshore wind parks. The wind mills are largely assembled onshore. MHI Vestas Offshore Wind is a joint venture between Vestas Wind Systems and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.
  • Wind mill at Nufenen-pass in Wallis, Switzerland, located at 2,400 meters above sea level, making it the highest wind mill in Europe with a view on the Alps of Bernes Oberland.
  • Production of 43 wind mill pylon pieces by SIF in Roermond, the Netherlands, for the ENECO Luchterduinen Wind Farm installed 23 kilometers off the coast between Noordwijk and Zandvoort. What makes these foundation pieces special is the fact that the wind turbines will be mounted directly on top of them, representing an innovative new technique which has only previ- ously been applied in a small number of cases.
  • A steel tree structure integrating solar panels along “the road of the future” in Oss, the Neth- erlands. Instead of leaves, solar panels are mounted on the branches. Hermans Energy is the supplier of these customized solar panels.
  • Installation of the Swiss Solar Tank in an apartment building in Oberburg, Switzerland. The tank, made by Jenni Energietechnik, is used to store energy collected from solar power.