The UK government has today launched two competitions worth £10m ($12.4m) to encourage further innovation in offshore wind technology.

Up to £7m is available under the third round of the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) and the Technology Strategy Board’s (TSB) component technologies development and demonstration scheme. Between five and ten projects are expected to be funded by the scheme.

Organisations can also apply for a share of £3m for the development of offshore wind technical feasibility studies.  This funding can be used to explore new ideas currently in the early stages of research and applications are encouraged from a range of sectors including those such as aerospace and oil and gas.

The deadline for both schemes is January 2013.

Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said: “This cash will help innovators across the UK develop a range of new ideas to cut costs and make offshore wind turbines more efficient to run. 

“This new investment follows two successful rounds of our offshore wind innovation scheme and I would encourage companies who haven’t yet taken advantage of this funding to get on board.”

Technology Strategy Board chief executive Iain Gray added: “We’d particularly welcome ideas from companies in parallel sectors – such as oil and gas, aerospace and manufacturing – who may wish to expand into the offshore wind sector.”