So far, US offshore wind projects have faced fierce objections from coastal residents. Cape Wind on Nantucket Sound is still waiting construction after surviving a decade of legal battles. US-based Principle Power's solution was to push its turbine out to sea and out of sight, where the wind is stronger and the "not-in-my-backyard" objections are minimized.
Sitting atop three pontoons anchored to the seafloor by cables in the waters off Portugal, the company's successful prototype, called the Windfloat, has been producing enough power for 1,300 homes ever since its blades began turning ten months ago. In the right-hand window, watch a video about the construction, installation and operation.
Investors are now seeking European Union funding to build five more off the coast of Portugal following the first turbine's success.